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India’s historic step with Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission will open avenues in healthcare

While the relationship between the clinician and the patient is paramount, a well thought through technology system can enable far reaching outcomes.

digital, healthcare, broadband, clinician, technology
Digital transformation of healthcare helps to reduce health inequalities and the mission will benefit our villages where broadband access will strengthen the healthcare evolution.

By Swati Rangachari

A key recognition from the ‘war against covid’ is the pivotal impact of health in everything we do.  Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission has come at an opportune time when citizens, industry and our government have recognized the increasing importance of access to affordable healthcare – diagnosis, treatment, and aftercare.  Covid grounded us to the colossal socio-economic downfall due to disease and the gaps in quality healthcare due to India’s diversity and scale of population. Digital transformation of healthcare helps to reduce health inequalities and the mission will benefit our villages where broadband access will strengthen the healthcare evolution.

While the relationship between the clinician and the patient is paramount, a well thought through technology system can enable far reaching outcomes. The mission’s systemic approach is quite an enabler with the building blocks of streamlining the flow of patient’s health information and its finance to creating a plug and play environment to the private sector and citizens through the unified health interfaces and user driven interfaces.  The system seems to be designed to create convenience for citizens and smartly address security.

Soon India can dream big of a high-quality domestic healthcare system that manages scale and convenience and contribute to an international ecosystem where India can become the hub for telemedicine, health tourism and digitally enabled treatment for India and the world. With anytime anywhere access to relevant health records (with the consent of the citizen), the doctor can do a proper predictive diagnosis that can enable on time treatment.

For example, identifying patterns of autoimmune diseases or mental health can bring huge value in on time diagnosis and successful treatment. The Electronic registries of citizen Health ID, authentic healthcare professionals, drugs etc and maintenance of the health records with global standards will ensure faster and smarter support in insurance and will further enable the insurance reforms to streamline the financial health of healthcare. India will also be able to effectively predict and isolate causes of disease due to scale level data analysis.

The nature of healthcare is universal, and the world is on a journey towards affordable healthcare.  The first is the universality of the quadruple aim– the strive to enable the clinician, lower cost, improve access, and improve outcomes, all four at the same time. Universality also means smart analysis while looking towards whole person care instead of symptomatic care.

Administrative costs can be a significant part of the overall healthcare costs which can get addressed if there is a universal standards or system where everyone can plug into.  In-addition automation of manual processes, health records and finances will reduce cost and increase focus in high quality diagnosis.  This is an historic phase for India and the government and industry can partner on insights from global experiences. In-fact the National Health Authority can create a healthcare CTO committee with the industry to gain from the expertise of the digital healthcare industry.

Finally, technology should be able to enable the sacred relationship between a clinician and the patient so that the clinician can spend more time truly listening to the patient and the technology should recede into the background and be unobtrusive.  Healthcare is now so central that countries will be recognized as a friendly destination for their policies in ensuring a productive healthy workforce.
A healthy India will pave the way to faster socio-economic growth.

(The author is Vice President and Country leader, India Public Affairs United Health Group. The article is for informational purposes only. Views expressed are personal and do not reflect the official position or policy of the Financial Express Online.)

 

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