Bangalore, Feb 7, 2014: Over 40 national and international companies and startups in healthcare, pharmaceuticals and the IT industry, participated here, in the just concluded 3rd annual conference of Health 2.0, insights, ideas, case studies and analysis, solutions for India's healthcare challenges.
Said James Mathew, Chairman, Health 2.0 India, in his introductory remarks: “The theme for Health 2.0 India 2014 is ‘Simply Lead’ which speaks to a belief that we must reboot and reframe leadership for healthcare in the 21st century. Enabling health for a billion people is no easy task. Our goal is to build awareness among patients, physicians and other health stakeholders that the digital revolution going on around them can, in fact, transform health. We also need to open the eyes of Indian engineers, entrepreneurs and others that one does not have to be a Doctor, Pharmacist or Nurse to take advantage of market opportunities in health or to be a part of transforming the industry.”
He mentioned some innovative Indian solutions in self management tools for healthcare:
GetActive Slim (Activity & Sleep Tracker) www.getactiv.in
TrackMyBeat home health management and health signs monitoring system http://www.trackmybeat.com/
Indian doctors has performed surgery using Google Glass -- allowing it to be broadcast live
The People Health portal in India, helped bring patients and doctors together in a hassle -free manner. http://www.peoplehealthindia.com/
Added Indu Subaiya, Co-Founder and CEO, Health 2.0: “There is an increasing trend in terms of adaptation of healthcare technology in US as well as in India across the ecosystem including patients, healthcare practitioners and other care givers
Simone Ahuja, Co-author of the book Jugaad innovations spoke via video link. She said “the jugaad way of innovations has been center theme for Indian innovations and a lot can be learnt from that. There is no direct correlation between R and D spending and innovations. Developers need to design products keeping in mind the Indian spending nature.’’
Ravi Kumar, CEO, Zanec, pointed out the few infrastructure challenges that healthcare has to face. He said “Health infrastructure in India is non-existent. As per WHO standards, a hospital must have 2.6 beds per 1000 patients but in India the number is menial, just 1.6 beds per 1000 patients.” The other two challenges that he stated were low numbers of healthcare professionals and poor healthcare coverage of Indians.
Anu Acharya, CEO of Mapmygenome, addressed the audience with her expertise in ‘The Power of Personalised Health’. She said, “In a country like India, where we have diverse population, we should be able to connect with people with what inspires them. Personalized health is a catalyst that can drive real change in reducing medical costs and improving the collective health of a nation. ”
Dr. R. D Thulasiraj, Director of Operations of Aravind Eye care gave excellent insights on the level of eye care present in the country along with challenges that it faces such as quality of care, diverse population, unmet needs, and the dignity of patients. He said “very small amount of population in India has access to eye healthcare and it is a sorry state as more than 80% blindness is treatable. Just a 10 minute cataract surgery can restore eyesight of 7.5 million people”. Aravind Eye care is successfully moving towards Universal Health Coverage.
There were various demos by entrepreneurs and start-ups. Mr. Nakul Pasricha of Pharmasecure; Amit Bhagat of Surgerica; Ananda Gupta of TrackMyBeat; presented the audience with newer healthcare innovations which included dynamic digital and technology products.
Mr. Mohammed who gave up his job at IBM to turn into a health entrepreneur, demoed his product GetActive which his team developed completely in India. He said, ‘’Wearable device market will grow and rather than blindly adapting from the west, we can create things that would be suitable for Indian conditions.” They also mentioned about the various ways Indians can develop innovative channels of care and build sustainable business models that attract more investors to digital health.
The panel discussion moderated by James Mathews was held on ‘Primary care for a billion People’. The panel shared their experiences and understanding about the primary healthcare requirements of people. It concluded with saying that India is going to tap into some of the most creative minds trying to crack the code on delivering quality healthcare to those who need it.
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