A French unicorn, Doctolib fundamentally changed how French and German patients book doctor visits. While its core business was appointment booking, Doctolib also began offering telehealth services in 2018 and utilised Stripe for payment processing and payouts. With the onset of the coronavirus pandemic however, and the French government rapidly changing the law to authorise reimbursement for medical costs incurred via online consultations, telemedicine demand exploded. Doctolib needed a payments solution to support this massive influx and handle faster payouts for thousands of newly onboarded physicians who would be serving patients remotely for the first time.
Doctolib leveraged Stripe Connect as part of a new and seamless practitioner-onboarding process. Previously, the company had been spending 1.5 hours initiating each doctor onto the platform, as well as issuing payouts to doctors once a month. In one weekend, Doctolib created a self-onboarding programme for new physicians. Doctolib also worked directly with Stripe’s engineering team and, in only a matter of days, was able to reduce doctor payout frequency from monthly to weekly. This was a critical improvement for doctors as telemedicine suddenly became their principle consultation source.
Stripe enabled Doctolib to provide frictionless payment processing at massive scale, servicing one million video consultations in March 2020 alone, compared with 150K video consultations in all of 2019. Doctolib onboarded 30K new practitioners that same month and jumped from 1,000 daily video consultations to 100,000. “We had a lot to accomplish in a short amount of time, but thanks to the reactivity of Stripe’s engineering team, their well-designed API, and meaningful documentation, we’ve always been able to move quickly and save hundreds of hours of developer time when launching new projects,” says Guillaume Pech, Head of Product at Doctolib.
Staying Power for Telemedicine
The COVID-19 pandemic triggered huge changes in healthcare practices and quick adoption of technologies by both medical staff and patients, regardless of age. Nearly 30% of Doctolib patients who booked an online appointment were at least 55 years old. The rising trend for telemedicine is expected to continue. Doctolib anticipates the number of video consultations to be five times higher in future months, as compared with the period before the pandemic.
The worst thing that can happen in a magic moment of adoption and building trust with practitioners is to have a product failure. Stripe gave us absolute reliability and scalability, which has been critical for us to succeed in supporting both doctors and patients.