Telenor Group has recently been recognised by Fortune magazine for its work to bring affordable healthcare to the mass market through its Tonic mobile service in Bangladesh.
Fortune, a globally renowned business magazine, included Telenor in its fourth annual “Change the World” list of companies that are doing well by doing good, said Grameenphone, a part of the Telenor Group, in a press release yesterday.
Tonic is a digital healthcare service for Grameenphone customers. Tonic aims to provide healthy living and wellness plans for all. Using mobile communication and information technology Tonic aims to be an easily accessible healthcare service.
The companies on this year's “Change the World” list are from 19 countries.
“To be recognised by Fortune as a company that contributes to changing the world is a testament to how Telenor uses its vast footprint and the power of connectivity for social good, to create shared value,” said Sigve Brekke, president and CEO of Telenor Group.
Michael Foley, CEO of Grameenphone, said, “The World Health Organisation estimates that more than 100 million people are pushed into extreme poverty each year due to medical costs and more than 400 million people lack access to basic health services.”
“Yet in many places – particularly Telenor markets like Bangladesh, Pakistan and Myanmar – life-changing primary care and health insurance has remained out of reach. Tonic can play an effective role in resolving this situation,” he added.
“Through Tonic, an app-based program aimed at subscribers of Telenor's Grameenphone service, some 5 million customers have signed up for benefits like the Jibon (life) app, which provides free information about maintaining a healthy, sanitary routine,” cites Fortune giving the reasoning to include Telenor group in its list.
“Tonic Daktar (doctor) provides access to immediate medical advice by phone for a fee of about 6 cents per minute. Tonic also offers discounts on medical services and financial aid for hospitalisations,” it added.
Telenor's home country is among the world's healthiest. Now the company is helping to improve healthcare in Bangladesh, where getting access to healthcare is difficult, the magazine mentioned.