1 Dec 2015 - by A4ID

Tele-medicine services in rural India

When the Eleos Foundation needed legal support for a project providing low-cost “tele-medicine” services in India, A4ID was able to provide help through Dechert, one of our Legal Partners.

The inspiration behind the Eleos Foundation

The Eleos Foundation is a non-profit organization whose mission is to “catalyze capital in the fight to eradicate extreme poverty with compassion and effectiveness” through investment and education.

Eleos is one of A4ID’s Development Partners, and approached us for legal support in their project to offer co-investment opportunities to their donors. Through our broker service, we were able to find them help with one of our Legal Partners, Dechert LLP.

Michelle Peters from Dechert LLP comments on the legal assistance Dechert provided to Eleos

“Most lawyers in Dechert’s Private Funds Practice have found it difficult to directly apply their private equity and hedge fund experience to their representation of pro bono clients. However, a few of us – including Kevin Scanlan, James H. Nix, Michael Hirschfeld, Elizabeth L. Ho, Kristen Maule and myself – have had the unique opportunity to do just that through our representation of The Eleos Foundation.

“As a “social impact investor,” Eleos invests between $50,000 and $250,000 in organizations it believes will provide both a social return for the communities in which they operate as well as a financial return for Eleos and other investors, Eleos’ investments have generally focused on for-profit companies that provide education and health services in developing nations. In addition, Eleos provides a forum for discussion and education about social impact investing. The organization has also hosted and participated in events that attract Nobel Prize winners and other global leaders in the areas of international development and social impact investment.

“To further expand its social impact, Eleos has begun offering co-investment opportunities to its traditional donors, beginning with an investment in a for-profit healthcare provider in rural India that has developed a model for providing low-cost “tele-medicine” services to villagers who would otherwise not have access to basic health care.

“Under this model, a patient makes an in-person visit to a local clinic, where a trained clinical assistant conducts an intake and takes the patient’s vital signs. The patient then sees a doctor via wireless video¬conferencing, allowing a doctor located hundreds of miles from the patient’s village to provide consultation, advice, advanced diagnostic tests, diagnoses and treatment options, including prescriptions. During less routine visits, the doctor can refer a patient to a district hospital or specialist for further evaluation and treatment.

“To date, this company has provided more than 21,000 tele¬medicine consultations to villagers throughout Northern India, at a cost to patients of around $0.60 per visit. As part of its preventive services program, this company also provides families with clean drinking water through an affordable water delivery subscription program.

“After negotiating an initial loan to the company, Eleos decided to make an additional investment and invited others to join it. With the assistance of Dechert, Eleos formed a pooled investment vehicle through which it could “catalyze capital” and offer 13 co-investors the opportunity to indirectly purchase convertible notes issued by the healthcare provider. As part of this project, we also helped The Eleos Foundation establish a wholly owned subsidiary to function as the manager of both this investment fund and future investment funds established by Eleos.”