Abu Dhabi Health Services Company, (SEHA), the UAE’s largest healthcare network, is introducing WhatsApp for Business as an additional method for patients to manage their health journeys. The new channel will complement SEHA’s existing platforms for bookings, such as its patient portal, app, and call center, to further elevate the patient experience and streamline access to its services.

The launch of the channel will automate 70% of SEHA’s patient interactions related to appointments, allowing patients to make and manage new and follow-up appointment bookings in under two minutes, cancel appointments, display all booked appointments, access general information, and keep up-to-date with the latest news and updates.

Bader Al Qubaisi, Group Chief Information Officer at SEHA, said: “At SEHA, we pride ourselves on listening to our customers and incorporating their feedback into our processes and services. Based on recent patient experience survey results, 70 percent of SEHA’s patients asked for self-services to help them easily manage their appointments and other services, particularly on one of the most popular social media apps on mobile phones – WhatsApp.”

The WhatsApp for Business feature is aligned to the patient portal and SEHA app, ensuring all appointments booked, changed, or cancelled are immediately reflected across those integral touchpoints.

As the cornerstone of the UAE’s healthcare landscape with patient-centricity at its core, SEHA continues to integrate technology and innovation into its processes and services. At the start of the pandemic, the network ensured the community had an easily-accessible platform to receive accurate and relevant information by introducing a WhatsApp bot to keep the public informed with relevant COVID-19 information and services and reduce the spread of fake news and rumors. The network also introduced a Telemedicine Virtual Outpatient Clinic (VOPC), which has completed over 460,000 tele and video consultations and services since its launch. SEHA also continues to upgrade its app as the patient’s gateway to booking appointments, accessing medical reports, and managing their wellbeing.

Dr. Marwan Al Kaabi, Acting Group Chief Operations Officer, SEHA, said, “We are redefining healthcare through the adoption of innovative technologies in efforts to continuously elevate the patient experience and encourage the smart and efficient delivery of healthcare in Abu Dhabi. In addition, by streamlining the process of booking and modifying appointments, we are empowering patients to become the ambassadors of their health journeys, equipping them with the necessary tools and resources to take ownership and book the necessary appointments.”

The service can be accessed via 02 410 2200 – to initiate a conversation, the number must be saved on the mobile phone then on the WhatsApp app, users must start a new chat with the saved contact. Once a conversation is activated, users seeking appointment scheduling will first undergo an authentication check using their Emirates ID number and phone number and existing patients will have their information confirmed. Following the confirmation, users will access a menu of options that will guide them on booking, modifying, cancelling, and viewing new or follow-up appointments.

Users seeking general information can find updated information on locations of SEHA’s facilities and centers, working hours and other relevant news and updates.