Repositioning Hospitals’ Role in India’s Healthcare with Technology
Over the last few decades, medical services in India have been able to respond rapidly to emergencies, deal with complex clinical problems, and manage individual illnesses. But as our population ages and the incidence of chronic disease grows, demand rises inexorably and costs follow, putting a lot of strain on our healthcare systems.
We, as a country, are a doctor-driven market and even hospitals are highly dependent on them for performance and growth. What makes the scenario even more complicated is the fact that 90 percent of these doctors are based out of metros and Tier-1 cities and have no inkling to move out, pushing the healthcare infrastructure to be created around them.
The good part, however, is that healthcare in India is amidst a major market transition and technology is definitely making a tremendous impact on the way healthcare is delivered. By streamlining processes and addressing traditional challenges, technology is bringing a sea of change across sectors. From using tablets and iPads to access patients’ records to using telemedicine to reach the remotest parts of the country, technology is making inroads into every aspect of healthcare and is addressing major challenges.
By going digital, healthcare has been able to move beyond the brick and mortar constraints of traditional medicine by using a new digital infrastructure to ensure more efficient service delivery. Digitization enables centralized database containing all aspects of patients’ health, which in turn reduces the risk of medical errors, enables continuity of care and can also be used by the concerned government authorities to make better policy decisions.
In a country that has just three percent of its physicians living in rural areas, and 25 percent in semi-urban areas, technology is gradually becoming godsend for healthcare providers. It is helping them figure out a way to cost-effectively serve a population deprived of medical care.
In this context, this whitepaper is trying to explore challenges facing healthcare structures in India and how technological advancements can help India leverage existing infrastructure of present hospitals by increasing their outreach manifolds.