Coviu: Aussie tech improving rural healthcare

By Nicholas Kachel

16 October 2019

3 minute read

A person sitting at a desk using Coviu to talk with their medical professional.

Our digital health invention, Coviu, enables patients to attend virtual appointments.

We don’t mean to brag (well, maybe a little) but we’ve invented some pretty cool stuff. While you may know we’re the brains behind Wi-Fi, you might not have heard about a little tool called Coviu.

Coviu brings easy digital consultations to rural and regional Australians. The cloud-based healthcare tool makes visiting your doctor possible online.

Improving rural and remote healthcare with Coviu

It’s easy to take accessible medical treatment in Australia for granted. If you live near an urban centre you likely have a suite of medical services at your doorstep.

But what happens if you’re elderly and getting about is an issue? Or if you live in a remote area and your closest GP (or speech pathologist, occupational therapist or dietitian) is located hundreds of kilometres away?

That’s where Coviu steps in. A spinout of our Data61, and one of the first companies to receive investment from our Innovation Fund managed by Main Sequence Ventures, Coviu is a video consultation platform. It removes the need for you to be physically present at consultations. There are features like interactive whiteboards and the ability to share images, files and x-rays. As a result, clinicians can easily explain diagnoses and procedures. Healthcare professionals can set up a video consultation in under five minutes. In addition, they have the functionality to quickly start delivering their services on mobile, desktop and web platforms.

A computer screen showing Coviu with two people talking via webcam and a diagram of a heart.

An example of the video conferencing capabilities with Coviu.

Bringing healthcare to the home

Trials with Coviu automatically detected cancer cells and helped predict a patient’s range of movement.

The tool cuts down on costs for patients and providers alike by bringing healthcare to the home. Doctors can offer services, such as specialist referrals or prescription renewals, without the need for an in-person appointment.

More than 1100 healthcare professionals around Australia use Coviu. This includes physiotherapists, speech pathologists, occupational therapists, dietitians, nutritionists and general practitioners.

“In Coviu, we’ve developed a solution tailored for health practitioners. It enables rich experiences with patients in the comfort of their own homes through custom tools designed for each health specialisation – whether it’s speech pathology or psychiatry,” Coviu CEO Dr Silvia Pfieffer said.

Coviu has connected more than 20,000 patients with doctors since Silvia founded the company in 2015. This includes organisations such as Health Team Australia, HealthKit and Ramsay Healthcare.

Australia By Design

Love the idea of Coviu as much as we do? It’s just one of the fantastic Aussie innovations featured on this season of Australia By Design.

Tune into the show on Channel 10, at 3pm on Sundays (or watch it on 10 Play any time).

The show explores the beauty and creativity of extraordinary innovations in Australia. Not only is Coviu showcased on the show, our very own Dr Toni Moate (Director of National Collections and Marine Infrastructure) is a judge on the expert panel.

At the end of the program the panel will decide which of the showcased innovations will be ‘Australia’s top innovation of the year’. Who will it be?