Interview with Charles Kunene, co-founder and product designer at Obaa

Charles Kunene

Obaa’s co-founder and product designer, Charles Kunene, is our latest interviewee. He is a first-time entrepreneur who believes that well thought out and user centered design can be seen in more than just the products that we use daily; such design can also inform how technology can holistically improve our lives.

Obaa is currently part of the 2015 class of Health Wildcatters and is an alum of MIT’s early stage accelerator MIT GFSA…

How would you pitch your company? What’s your elevator pitch?

Obaa has developed Prime, a platform to connect doctors to remote dermatologists through video visits on Google Glass. This solution ensures that providers are reimbursed, patient wait times are reduced and health systems save money.

What sets you apart from competitors?

We’re building a superior product that delivers excellent customer satisfaction and improves physician efficiency. This sets us apart from the competition.

What’s your business model?

We provide a tool to independent practices and accountable care organizations that improves their practice and increases patient satisfaction. They in turn pay a monthly fee for the service.

Can you share some numbers? How many users do you have?

We’re currently working on closed pilot programs with institutions in three states. We will make the results of our pilot available afterwards.


Where do you see the company going from here?

Obaa’s mission is to ensure that anyone, anywhere can have access to healthcare on their own schedule. With Prime, we’re beginning with dermatology but there are many applications for our product, in other specialties like hepatology.

Where do you see the mHealth industry going?

New platforms in the health space are designed to give patients more control over their care and access to their patient data. This movement, which began with the quantified self in the consumer space has shown the potential to make individuals more engaged with their bodies and the care they receive.

Platforms that have led the way have placed the provider in the patient’s hands and on the patient’s schedule.

How long are we from seeing modern mHealth technologies going mainstream?

One of the biggest hurdles has been that the laws haven’t kept up with the technology that’s being developed. Despite the regulatory burden and legislation that doesn’t yet fully recognize telemedicine, it won’t take long for telemedicine to become mainstream among patients, their employers and payers.