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Digital India Health summit will create a multi-stakeholder body this November

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We will be releasing the state of healthcare IT in India report 2019, to give a sense of where we are today and where we are headed in the next one year

The Digital India Health Summit is just around corner. To be held on November 16, 2019, this conference promises to bring together healthcare leaders, technology experts and decision makers all under one roof to discuss and deliberate on future prospects of digital health in India. Raelene Kambli speaks to Amitabh Sinha, CEO, Digital India Health conference to know more about the event.

What according to you is the significance of connected health in India?

India is the tech capital of the world and yet, we have not used technology as much in India as we have helped the world use it. Also, other sectors like finance, agriculture, education and manufacturing have reaped the benefits of technology, but health has still remained a laggard. With technology proliferating across sectors and with the rising cost of care, it is imperative that we use technology to connect health across the continuum and with the patients more proactively, and ‘connected health’ is the way forward.

What is your opinion on the rate of adoption of digital technologies within Indian hospitals in the last five years?

The rate of adoption has picked up, but still much needs to be done starting from the basic EMRs. But with PMJAY in place, tech adoption will accelerate faster for electronic authorisation of treatment, to submission of reports, approvals and payments. This is one single reason that adoption of technology will be faster than ever before.

What kind of investment v/s return scenario do you see in this space?

Typically, the ballpark figure is 3 per cent of the budget. So, with an industry of about 85 billion, we must be investing somewhere between 2.5 billion in IT. There are studies which show a 2:1 return in eHealth . Healthcare IT deployment returns have to be evaluated in terms of clinical efficacy, efficiency in administration and the resultant cost savings and we are discussing this at the summit in detail with examples.

What is the focus of Digital Health India Summit?

Prof Rajendra Pratap Gupta has put forth a few simple rules; One, it is about ‘knowledge for action’. Second, no theory only practical discussions which helps take the decisions. So, every speaker at our summit is a change-maker in digital health, who has worked in the domain. Our focus is to address the present, and decide the future of healthcare technology for India. We have brought in global change makers and decision makers from India to lay the future roadmap for digital health in India and address the key concerns / solutions. Also, we will recognise the innovative leaders who are transforming the industry by awarding the innovators. We have a jury of India’s top healthcare experts and leaders who are judging the awards. We want people to lead by example and motivate those who are treading this path of digital health and innovation. These awards are to catalyse the entire healthcare industry to innovate at a higher scale and level.

Who are the key speakers at the event?

We have Dr Pritt Toher, the advisor to the Government of Estonia. As we know, Estonia is the torch bearer for digitisation and Dr Pritt Toher is going to share his learnings and message for people deploying digital healthcare.

Richard Alvarez is amongst the pioneers who led the foray of Canadian Government into Digital Health through Canada Infoway as their President and CEO. He was way ahead of time and he will share and interact with the healthcare leaders for deploying digital health at scale.

Dr Alain Labrique is the director of John Hopkins Global mHealth Initiaitive and is amongst the top leaders in the domain of digital health. He is going to lead the discussion around global scene and what is expected of deploying digital tools.

We have all the top leaders from hospital, pharma, insurance, disease management space who have lead the tech deployments like Dr Devi Shetty, Sangita Reddy, Nikhil Taneja, Jeyaseelan , Sudarshan Jain, A Vaidheesh, Prof Prabhat Chand, and the list goes on of who’s who in digital health deployment.

What will be the key takeaways that you wish to disseminate from this summit?

For every attendee, it is about a comprehensive update on the status of digital health, with key leaders delivering their experiences and sharing their wisdom for those into digital health. We will be releasing the state of healthcare IT in India report 2019, to give a sense of where we are today, and where we are headed in the next one year. Also, We will be giving people clarity on how they can use digital tools in their day to day business/ practice, and how it can help achieve better productivity while lowering cost and making healthcare patient centric and outcome oriented.

Importantly, we will be announcing two major initiatives:

1) one is on creating a multi-stakeholder body (code named ‘Health Parliament’) which will work as a think tank for healthcare and also mentor future leaders with the tag line ‘Great Leaders. Right Policies.’

2) We will launch a major global initiative for capacity building for digital health. We want that everyone who walks out after attending the summit is energised to dive into this domain of digital health and the summit will help people in the field in more ways than just attending the summit. Over and above the above points we are also inviting the Digital Health Startups to the summit and give them an opportunity to meet the key industry leaders to explore partnerships.

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