Experts dwelled on prevention and workforce skilling and management as key for healthconomics
The event was organised by PHD Chamber virtually
New Delhi: “Frugal Innovation, Digital Health, Data Science, Community Mobilisation and Surveillance systems at the district level is the way forward for India to handle Pandemics and manage health care said Prof. Randeep Guleria as experts from UK like Prof Sir Malcolm Grant and Prof Derek Bell dwelled on Prevention and Workforce skilling and management as key for Healthconomics” at the ‘Healthconomics: Joint Stakeholders’ Roundtable of India and UK on the Emerging Landscape of Healthcare Delivery in Wake of Covid” on 24th July 2020 organised by PHD Chamber virtually.
The eminent panellists present were Amb. (Mrs.) Ruchi Ghanshyam, Ex High Commissioner of India to UK, Professor Sir Malcolm Grant, Ex-Chairman, NHS, UK, Prof Derek Bell, Chair, Acute Medicine, Imperial College, London, Prof. Ravikant, Director, AIIMS, Rishikesh, UP, India, Prof. (Dr.)Randeep Guleria, Director, AIIMS, New Delhi, Mr. Mahendra Singh, Expert Member, Digital Health, AI in Health, Telemedicine & Innovation, WHO Geneva, Dr. Deep Goel, Senior Director & Robotic Gastrointestinal Surgeon, BLK Hospital, New Delhi, Dr. Shreeraj Deshpande, Chief Operating Officer, Future Generali India Insurance Company Limited, Prof. Bejon Misra, Founder, Partnership for Safe Medicines (PSM) India.
The round table meet was graced by the special presence and address by Mr. Sanjay Aggarwal, Senior Vice President, PHDCCI & Chairman & CEO of Paramount Cables Group and the session was moderated by Prof. Parag Singhal, Consultant Endocrinologist, UK, Dr. N. Subramanian, Chairman, Health Committee, PHDCCI & Director, Medical Services, Indraprastha Apollo Hospitals and Mr. Vivek Seigell, Principal Director, PHD Chamber
Mr. Sanjay Aggarwal welcomed all the panellists for taking out time and joining today’s roundtable session. Mr. Agarwal told that the hospital industry is expected to reach $132 bn by 2023 from $ 61.8 bn in 2017; growing at a CAGR of 16-17%. He has also mentioned that the best & qualified doctors India has, who are providing cost efficient treatment in India and Government initiatives like Ayushman Bharat and to allow FDI up to 100% under automatic route, India can also become a Healthcare Delivery hub of the world.
Mr. Agarwal further gave some specific suggestions regarding investment in hospital infrastructure, technology transfer and Investment in training and skilling of the medical professionals specially the paramedics, nurses, medical technicians & clinical trial experts.
Prof. Parag Singhal in his opening remarks mentioned about the impact of Covid pandemic on the healthcare system and the most affected are the vulnerable population. Prof. Singhal mentioned that in this crisis the conventional clinics have been replaced by telephonic clinics in UK. He also mentioned that India has the low-cost healthcare facility and both the countries should collaborate to use Technology and Maximise the capacity to focus on the primary care and preventive healthcare.
Dr. N. Subramanian mentioned facts and figures about the overall mortality ratios and preventive mechanism like 68% of deaths were due to Non-Communicable diseases and over 1.5 million deaths could have been avoided with the proper preventive measures. He also mentioned that more than two hundred thousand people are in end stage renal failure. He also talked about the healthcare expenditure India is only 3.5% of the GDP of which only 1% + is spent by the Govt and the rest is shouldered by the individuals.
Dr. Subramanian mentioned that if NCDs and Mental illness were not prevented then we will face $47 trillion of additional burden on healthcare.
Dr. Subramanian also said that we need interventions in terms of preventing illness & early diagnosis, which will help in saving the cost. He urged the Government and private agencies, researchers to come forward a find a mechanism for making the entire Healthcare system affordable & accessible.
Amb. (Mrs.) Ruchi Ghanshyam, Ex High Commissioner of India to UK shared some very important issues and concern areas of each country. She said that one of the silver linings of the Pandemic has been that Countries have looked at collaborating wherein India has sent HCQ to US and UK. She said that collaboration is required between the two countries and this is the time for public and private sector to work together for a positive outcome. She has also mentioned about the skilled workforce (Indian diaspora), where as many Indian origin doctors got trained at British Association of Physician and returned to India with higher effectiveness. She said Healthcare infrastructure requires huge investments and one should think of innovative ideas to tackle the ongoing pandemic. She has also mentioned that the use of technology to be taken forward and the world has to be united to emerge from this pandemic.
Professor Sir Malcolm Grant talked about the various challenges faced by different Government while facing the crisis and many Governments have failed to tackle the same. Sir Malcom talked about the NHS strength being the skilled and expert workforce they have and meanwhile and expressed the challenges and failure of providing enough testing and the PPE kits during the pandemic. Sir Malcom mentioned to focus on the preventive care and a need to promote the role of universities in healthcare which would get breakthrough in Covid vaccine. He has also mentioned about the need of higher investments in research facilities and workforce.
Prof Derek Bell said that Covid-19 has become a biggest threat and due to lack of preparedness at Government level and hospitals it is more challenging. Prof. Bell mentioned to focus on sustainability and on self-care management as the learnings from Covid 19. He also mentioned that technology has played a major role in managing the Covid situation as public responded more to the online platforms and phone calls on messaging during these pandemic times and hence we need to build more capacity in these areas as well. He also expressed his doubts& thoughts on how to balance the investment viz-a-viz population and how to build a preventive infrastructure. Prof. Bell mentioned about the backlog of elective care and focus on self-care management. He highlighted that we need to think of Public Health and there’s a lot more investment is required in the entire Health care system.
Prof. Ravi Kant mentioned about the focus on the prevention as prevention is better than cure. He has also mentioned to maximise the use of Tele Health technology to cater more population. Prof. Ravi Kant talked about the preventive care by Yoga & Ayurveda while focusing on schooling by water purity, nutrition orientation and vaccine.
He has mentioned that tertiary care requires more money which can be only reduced by focusing on the primary care. He also said that to increase the standards of private medical schools and emphasized on the school education to play a role in hygiene and nutrition.
Prof. Ravikant also mentioned to focus on health insurance and insisted that everyone should be insured and emphasized on the role of Yoga for prevention and Ayurveda for the management of mild cases.
Prof. Randeep Guleria shared the ongoing challenges the country is facing, while fighting with COVID-19 situation. He said that Digital health, Data Science, Community Mobilisation and surveillance systems at the district level is the way forward. He also mentioned that earlier we could only manage 10,000 tests per day for Covid and now we have more than 1200 labs for Covid testing and performing more than 3.5 lac tests every day. He also mentioned about their research paper with Department of biotechnology regarding the recycling of PPE kit as to reduce the import dependency. Prof. Guleria mentioned about the most important facility started by AIIMS, New Delhi as “Contact” which is tele consultation application providing 24*7 online audio video consultation to the patients at large.
Prof. Guleria mentioned that Covid pandemic have made lot of Frugal Innovations using digital health technology and shared that digitization of healthcare system and proper surveillance system would be the future to prepare for these types of pandemics.
Mr. Mahendra Singh said that a rapid management system is required to fight against this pandemic. He said, we need to think on planning, execution of capacity building and increasing the testing for COVID-19.
Mr. Singh also stressed on Telemedicine consultation, which could be very effective during these challenging times. He also said that finding a vaccine is not only the solution but we need to be prepared and focus on the prevention.
Dr. Deep Goel talked about the bilateral relationships and how UK and India could look at various aspects of partnership in conducting training programs and digital health technology transfer.
Dr. Goel highlighted that Telemedicine has become an integral part nowadays, as more than 150 consultations are done through digital Health, which helps in saving the time. Dr. Goel said with the new modern technology and new advance equipment in the Health care industry the functioning of any tests conducted have become much smoother and accurate.
Prof. Bejon Misra highlighted various ongoing issues and said that patients do not identify the healthcare sector either run by Government or Private sector but consider if they are able to access the most affordable and effective healthcare or not.
Prof. Misra urged that to empower the patient to make a choice of the healthcare mechanism. He also urged to promote the AYUSH in UK. Prof. Misra also mentioned about the world’s largest Government funded scheme Ayushman Bharat and creation of more than 1,50,000 health & wellness centers which is a big opportunity to collaborate for technology and foreign investor for infrastructure development while ensuring the quality and affordability of healthcare.
Dr. Shreeraj Deshpande talked about the ongoing Ayushman Bharat Yojana, which aims to provide free health coverage to more than 50 crore population. He has shared the figures related to the Indian population and the insurance coverage where he has mentioned that still 50 cr of population remains uncover in the country.
He has suggested that can we make health insurance as a mandatory model and how one should do that.
Dr. Deshpande said the 65% of expenses are out of pocket expenditure and only 35% is the in-patient expenditure where insurance plays a very important role and this should be standardised.
Mr. Vivek Seigell thanked all the Panelist for joining today’s session and in mentioned about the areas of collaboration in digital technology like Tele-Pathology &Tele-Radiology to increase the diagnostics capabilities and setting up of Chronic disease management Speciality clinics to address the unique needs of the patients with long term medical conditions requiring significant patient self-care.
He has also mentioned about the saying Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam” meaning “The world is one Family” where we can possibly create a global impact on public and private health by combining the expertise of Indian Cost effective healthcare and NHS expertise.