Q&A: Khalil, Karim and Walid, Founders of Tabibi 24/7

Tabibi 24/7

The ailing state of Egypt’s health care system is no secret and even private treatment options seem to be limited to either “malpractice” or “sketchy”. Meanwhile, there’s the hassle of Cairo traffic, which becomes doubly worse for pregnant women and new mothers whose schedules are filled with doctor’s appointments and health checkups.

Enter Tabibi 24/7, a modern health service that provides on-call and in-home care all day, every day. With two clinics so far – their flagship in Maadi and a second in Sheikh Zayed – they also plan to open two more next year, one on the east side of Cairo and one in downtown. Although their main focus has been pediatrics up to now, founders Dr. Khalil Abdel Khalek, Karim Ragab and Walid Abdel Hadi shared their vision of expansion with us at this week’s RiseUp Summit.

 

Karim Ragab, Managing Director
Karim Ragab, Managing Director

Tell us about Tabibi 24/7

We provide you a doctor at all times, any time, any day of the week. Our main focus is on pediatricians. That’s our biggest cohort of doctors. So our main client base are mothers who can have the peace of mind that they can call Tabibi anytime and we get very professional medical care for their kids either at their homes or in one of our clinics. We provide the service all the time and everywhere.

It is a premium service, because we employ the best doctors that you can get and we provide a superior service. It takes quite some effort to get the doctor to the place where he needs to be and to give the mother as much time as she needs, so we believe it is a premium service but it is a competitively priced premium service. We really try very hard to provide our customers with the best possible team.

 

Dr. Khalil Abdel Khalek, Medical Director
Dr. Khalil Abdel Khalek, Medical Director

What makes Tabibi special?

We see that Tabibi does not only provide service for patients, but it also provides a career for young doctors in Egypt, which does not exist at the moment. A doctor now finishes university, finds himself in the market with zero career path or options or mentorship. They just jump from hospital to hospital to shift jobs, hoping that some time after ten years he can get some money and open his own clinic and simply start at zero at age 30 or 35. The way we try to do it in Tabibi, under Khalil, is to really provide a career path.

We provide this ecosystem of learning and growing so all the doctors sit together, discuss cases together. We have continued medical education, which is unheard of in the private practice in Egypt.

Our competition are mainly individual doctors. The Egyptian medical community goes a lot by reputation. Probably our strongest competition is doctor so-and-so who has been in the market for 20 years and has a very big name. We come with a younger, more innovative approach, but of course it takes some time to convince people that we do it just as well in terms of the service that we provide for our little patients.

We’re much more than a private practice because we have a lot of doctors than a normal private practice and we have social presence, we have free education for parents. We’re happy to offer help online and on our call center just to help parents and people.

 

Walid Abdel Hadi, Operations Director
Walid Abdel Hadi, Operations Director

Where do you see Tabibi going in the next 10 years?

I see Tabibi becoming the number one place to go to if you have any medical problem for everyone. We want to be the place to call. We want to be the natural resource – you have any medical problem, your hand goes to your phone and you call Tabibi. It doesn’t mean that we can completely solve the issue, but we’re the first one they go to. We can check the case and in 80 or 90% of situations, a primary care physician, which we are, can solve the issue. But if more secondary care is needed or even hospitalization, we can organize this for our patients. So we’re a bit of a gateway to the medical world.

 

In your stage now, what are your biggest challenges?

People. Finding the right people. We want to provide consistently, very high level quality of service. And for this, we need a pretty large team of a.) doctors and b.) support staff – call center, drivers, the people doing the billing, and all these kinds of things. And all these people have to work together as if they are one body. So that for the patient they receive a very coherent and seamless and high quality service at all times. And getting the right team for that, motivating the right team, training up the team to consistently provide this service, I think this is our biggest challenge at the moment… HR. Day and night. 24/7. Currently, we have 12 doctors and 12 support staff. And we are planning to grow a lot.

 

Any last words?

Go Tabibi!

 

WE SAID THIS: You can call Tabibi 24/7 at 16724.

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