Around 70% Indians live in remote villages, often outside the catchment area of government hospitals.
A country of more than 6,00,000 villages has a little more than 23,109 single-physician clinics serving it with not more than 4-6 beds each.
Shortage of qualified medical professionals is one of the key challenges facing the Indian healthcare industry.
Deloitte’s Healthcare Outlook Report 2015 says India’s ratio of 0.7 doctors and 1.5 nurses per 1,000 people is dramatically lower than the WHO average of 2.5 doctors and nurses per 1,000 people. The report estimates that the industry needs an additional 1.54 million doctors and 2.4 million nurses to match the global average.
Can technology help transform Indian healthcare delivery?
Technology is triggering an evolution of healthcare services in India. According to Frost and Sullivan, India’s healthcare information technology market is expected to hit $1.45 billion in 2018, more than three times the $381.3 million reached in 2012.
Government agencies and healthcare centers are now able to collate information on healthcare indexes and track the progress of people’s health in the remotest villages across India. In some instances, availability of health records of patients in a digital format has cut down significantly on procedural time. Today, mobile apps help direct patients to the nearest Doctor or Clinic and even help you track and manage your blood pressure and sugar levels.
Thanks to mobile apps that Anganwadi and Government Healthcare workers are empowered to take corrective measures. Unlike before, today, a simple SMS alert is sufficient to ensure that parents are reminded of the fact that their children have to be administered polio drops or other vaccines by a certain date.
Vikash Mohanta & his team is working on project “DR EPAD“ (idea validated by world’s premier Founder Institute, Silicon Valley) making healthcare services available, accessible and affordable to a billion plus people across India to solve some major health challenges. It caters better planning and delivery of services for the increasing number of older people.
Time is ripe to leverage technology and develop state-of-the-art ambulances and diagnostic labs to reach people in the remotest part of the country. Technology will continue to create patient-centric healthcare systems that can improve response time, reduce human error, save costs, and impact the quality of life.