Tonic Discount: relieving patients from overwhelming medical expenses

News Hour:

Md. Abul Hossain was suffering from immense physical pain for a long time. He had visited a clinic in hopes of a long-term remedy, but was instead suggested to visit a larger hospital to run more detailed tests. Abul Hossain, the breadwinner of a middle income joint family, decided to let the pain subside and heal by itself. The ongoing treatment of his mother’s critical illness meant that a considerable chunk of the family’s monthly budget was already being depleted.

The intensity of his pain, however, kept increasing until the day his family members realized that Abul Hossain needed urgent medical attention. Despite realizing the significant pressure that would be placed on the family’s finances, Abul Hossain’s younger brother Md. Mohsin had no other option but to take him to the Apollo Hospitals Dhaka.

After going to Apollo and having his brother go through a number of tests—MRI scan, ultrasonography, and blood test—Mohsin anxiously approached the billing booth to ask if he could receive any concessions on his dues. He was relieved when the staff informed him about Tonic Discount and how becoming a member would get him 10% discount on selected services at the hospital.

As soon as he got to know about Tonic, a free healthcare service provided by Grameenphone and Telenor Health, Mohsin, a longtime user of the mobile service provider, registered for Tonic in hopes of saving money on his brother’s medical bills. And it certainly paid off as promised. After paying the bills at Apollo, which is one of the 50 partner healthcare service providers in the country that provide up to 40% discount to Tonic members, Mohsin was able to walk away saving a substantial amount on that day due to Tonic Discount.

“As soon as I received the benefits of this unique service, I informed my family members about Tonic Discount. This is a very unique and helpful service for us, especially for the middle-class. My family’s medical expenses exceed 1 lakh taka every year, and a service like Tonic Discount will cut the cost to a great extent,” says a grateful Mohsin.

Launched in June of this year in Bangladesh, Tonic has already made its mark through registering a significant number of members. With its groundbreaking service Tonic Discount, members are saving up cash on medical services in partner hospitals in and outside Dhaka. Tonic Discount cuts down the members’ expenses on healthcare services including surgery, bed rates, all kinds of diagnostic, and ambulance services.

“Tonic Discount has been providing a rebate of 10% on some of the services of Apollo Hospitals Dhaka to its members, and in the past two months there have been more than 490 individuals who have availed this discount at Apollo. Tonic has aptly managed healthcare expenditure on the services such as MRI and CT scan whose costs are relatively higher than other services. This ultimately manages to lower the overall cost for any patient,” said Enayet Ullah Khan, Director of Business Development at Apollo Hospitals Dhaka.

To avail discount, Tonic members need to write the code of the partner hospital or diagnostic center they are taking service from and send a SMS to 789. When they show the reply SMS at Tonic Discount concierge, they will be offered up to 40 % discount depending on the service they have taken from the healthcare centers. Tonic members, now, will spend less money on medical services thanks to the revolutionary Tonic Discount.

Grameenphone users, who are yet to get Tonic membership, can join Tonic for free via USSD at *789#, online at www.mytonic.com, or by calling 789. To use Tonic Discounts, one has to have a Tonic membership.

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This article has been posted by a News Hour Correspondent. For queries, please contact through [email protected]
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