Of apps and health…

A couple of days back, I was at the clinic (again) – Keshav had developed an infection (again).

They have now implemented a comprehensive digital platform from which you can book appointments, check reports and prescriptions and sign digital consent forms. All from the convenience of your mobile, as you continue the scroll of doom on X or Insta (or whatever is your poison at this stage in life).

Coupled with the insurance provider, I now have two apps that I use to navigate my family’s health issues. Of course, the insurance provider is duly changed on an annual basis, given the exorbitant renewal rates that they throw up, and so part of the annual digital cleanup is deleting the older ones. The phone- oh what would one do without it?

Here were my observations a little more than a year back. Not much has changed since, except that I have raked up many many more points and am now a silver member of the much (un)desired loyalty program.

How do I downgrade?

I was at the dentist today.

It’s so bad nowadays, so bad that I qualified for the clinic’s in-house rewards program.

No I am serious. They have invested quite a bit (or so they think) into tech, and this includes a WhatsApp bot (intelligent they say, Bot I say) to schedule appointments, an app to schedule appointments (again??) and a rewards program, that regulars like me got auto-enrolled in.

Ok granted that I have a toddler who is also on my number, and hence registration, but common. The last thing I wanted was to be eligible for cashbacks from a clinic. Wasn’t it enough that my neighborhood omnipresent pharmacy (cough cough Life pharmacy cough cough) holds discount festivals where one can “save” on pharmaceutical products?

Oh yes, and my dentist gives me a 10% discount (and everyone else apparently).

Anyways, such is life. Between colds and coughs and bad teeth and mandatory vaccines, I managed to spend more time visiting clinics than I have in my entire 45 years of existence. I guess COVID has changed us in more ways than we can imagine!

Back home, toddler now has started to learn that he can make a fuss, and on a granular level. So no more fuss for no TV while eating, it is also on a song basis. Bad song, waaaaaaaa. Nice song interrupted by ads – waaaaaa. Rice and dhal? Waaaaaaa. Masur dhal? Waaaaaaa. different spoon (common!) – waaaaaaa.

Incidentally, he accompanied me to the friendly neighborhood clinic, for his mandatory checkup and scheduling of vaccinations. His visit is more pleasant, discovering new chairs to scratch and paper to tear, all while an exasperated doctor (paediatrician is the fancy word) sits wondering how many more brats will come through that door before the end of his miserable day.

Maybe he has an employee rewards program to compensate? Free meds and block discounts on paracetamol? You never know.

See you tomorrow!