Government Set to Focus on Telemedicine and Biometrics Based onSteering Committee Report; Big Opportunity for Startups

By Riddhi|13th Mar 2012
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The report submitted by the steering committee on health for the 12th five-year plan (2012-2017) to the Planning Commission mentions that they will recommend measures for wider use of telemedicine and IT technology in providing tertiary healthcare facilities.

Facilities like Skype, mobile phones, biometrics and e-health will now be available to India’s primary health centres (PHCs). All district hospitals will be linked to Medical Colleges through various audio visual aids. They will provide referral support through telephone and telemedicine.

There are plans of setting up a Citizen Health Information System (CHIS), which will be a biometric based health information system. Once CHIS is set up health records of every person will be constantly updated. Registration of births, deaths and cause of death will also be incorporated in the system. The system will also have information regarding maternal and infant death reviews, nutrition surveillance, hospital information services, etc.

The report submitted by the committee to the Planning Commissions said, “The delivery of health care services, where distance is critical factor by all health care professionals using information and communication technology for the exchange of valid information for diagnose, treatment and prevention of disease and injury, research and evaluation and for continuing education of health care providers, all in the interest of advancing the health of individuals and their communities.”

The report also recommended setting up a Hospital Management System. This will help in managing a medical college or district hospital in a more streamlined fashion. “Under the NKN (National Knowledge Network) a pilot project has been sanctioned at AIIMS to create a virtual teaching module to deliver quality medical education to various network institutions,” said the report.

This could potentially open up doors for healthcare startups to reach to a much larger audience than ever before.

Read the report here. Watch out this space for more updates.

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