India’s growth story depends on how it rides the self-reliant push, say industry captains

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Updated: August 15, 2020 4:01 PM

Industry captains on Saturday said India's self-reliance will determine how high and strong the country's flag of freedom flies, and also welcomed Prime Minister Narendra Modi's announcement of National Digital Health Mission in his Independence Day speech.

Panagariya pointed out that even with the current level of intervention, India is staring at debt-to-GDP ratio rising from 72 per cent to about 85 per cent at least by the end of the current year.Welcoming the National Digital Health Mission, Biocon CMD Kiran Mazumdar Shaw said it gives India’s healthcare sector a digital backbone.

Industry captains on Saturday said India’s self-reliance will determine how high and strong the country’s flag of freedom flies, and also welcomed Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s announcement of National Digital Health Mission in his Independence Day speech.

In a tweet, Adani Group Chairman Gautam Adani said, “Every Independence Day is a tribute to millions of sacrifices that earned us the freedom to be born and raised in a free country full of opportunities. From now on, our Atmanirbharta will determine how high and strong the flag of freedom flies. Happy #IndependenceDay.”

Welcoming the National Digital Health Mission, Biocon CMD Kiran Mazumdar Shaw said it gives India’s healthcare sector a digital backbone and it is vital to make a difference to India’s healthcare sector. Deloitte India Partner and Lifesciences and Healthcare Industry Leader Charu Sehgal said the mission can be a very significant development in moving India’s healthcare system to the next level.

“Given that remote doctor consultation will continue even after the pandemic ends, the digital access to patient data can be a game changer leading to a more effective diagnosis. Most importantly, this will improve access by providing a big boost to consultation through telemedicine with specialist doctors for patients in smaller towns and remote locations,” Sehgal stated.

In his speech, Modi said, “Every Indian will be given a health ID. This health ID will work as each Indian’s health account.” Every test, disease and diagnosis, and medical reports along with medicines will be stored in every citizen’s health ID. These health issues will be resolved through this National Digital Health Mission, he said while announcing the scheme.

Apollo Hospitals Group Chairman Prathap C Reddy said, even as the world grapples with the coronavirus pandemic, India is at the forefront of developing a vaccine “with several companies having made excellent progress”. 

“I am optimistic that within a year, we will have a vaccine,” he said while also drawing attention to non-communicable diseases (NCDs) that “pose a bigger threat to the future of humanity and account for close to 80 per cent of global mortality”.

“Bearing this hard reality in mind, it is very important that patients battling chronic diseases do not neglect their health any longer on account of the pandemic and seek timely medical attention. Further, a delay could also lead to emergencies on account of uncontrolled progression of NCDs, choking the medical ecosystem in our country,” Reddy said.

He further said, “Overcoming this crisis and a resolute determination to be free from NCDs must be our collective goal on Independence Day 2020. Just as we are combating COVID-19, similarly, a war against NCDs must be an equally important imperative for India as the prevalence of these diseases is becoming younger.”

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