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22nd December 2017

Theme

Bullet Healthcare Express

THE HEALTHCARE ROUNDTABLE
Fixing Healthcare Chaos -Transforming healthcare delivery systems

Health care is ailing and in need of help. Yes, medical treatment has made astonishing advances over the years. But the packaging and delivery of that treatment are often inefficient, ineffective, and consumer unfriendly. Three kinds of innovation can make health care better and cheaper. One changes the ways consumers buy and use health care. Another uses technology to develop new products and treatments or otherwise improve care. The third generates new business models, particularly those that involve the horizontal or vertical integration of separate health care organizations or activities. Innovations in the delivery of health care can result in more-convenient, more-effective, and less-expensive treatments for today's time-stressed and increasingly empowered health care consumers. For example, a health plan can involve consumers in the service delivery process by offering low-cost, high-deductible insurance, which can give members greater control over their personal health care spending. New drugs, diagnostic methods, drug delivery systems, and medical devices offer the hope of better treatment and of care that is less costly, disruptive, and painful

India is unable to cater to the rising demands of immediate medical facilities across states as a major part of the population continues to reside in remote and hard-to-reach rural areas, suffering and fighting the worst kind of ailments. Despite several efforts, India still struggles with a severe shortage of doctors, especially in the rural areas. Is it lack of healthcare infrastructure, poor working conditions for doctors in rural areas, a medical education system that lacks focus on public health, lack of government investment in public health service or is it lack of a political will to address India's most pressing public health issue?.

India is way behind in health indicators not because we have shortage of doctors or hospitals, but because we do not have the needed political will, which translates in not having a well-developed national and state level public health service and public health cadre.government will need to take a bigger responsibility in solving this issue. Lack of a political will is the biggest hindrance in translating these solutions into positive results. Currently, our nation stands at a crossroad where some efforts have helped us to better our health indicators, yet there is a long way to go in order to achieve the dream of a healthy India, where every citizen will have equitable access to quality healthcare.India will therefore need to solve every single problem that serves as an obstacle towards achieving our healthcare goals. This means that political leaders and healthcare decision makers will need to work towards ending corruption and focus more on making healthcare a right of every citizen.

The six forces—industry players, funding, public policy, technology, customers, and accountability—can help or hinder efforts at innovation. Individually or in combination, the forces will affect the three types of innovation in different ways. The health care sector has many stakeholders, each with an agenda. Often, these players have substantial resources and the power to influence public policy and opinion by attacking or helping the innovator. For example, hospitals and doctors sometimes blame technology-driven product innovators for the health care system's high costs. Medical specialists wage turf warfare for control of patient services, and insurers battle medical service and technology providers over which treatments and payments are acceptable. Inpatient hospitals and outpatient care providers vie for patients, while chains and independent organizations spar over market influence. Nonprofit, for-profit, and publicly funded institutions quarrel over their respective roles and rights. Patient advocates seek influence with policy makers and politicians, who may have a different agenda altogether—namely, seeking fame and public adulation through their decisions or votes.

Advances in digital technologies will create enormous new possibilities and opportunities. The wise will recognize and ride this trend. Those who ignore it will do so at their peril.

Over the past several decades, thanks to improved diagnostic and therapeutic options, healthcare has experienced an explosion of innovations designed to improve life expectancy and quality of life. As healthcare organizations face unprecedented challenges to improve quality, reduce harm, improve access, increase efficiency, eliminate waste, and lower costs, innovation is becoming a major focus once again. Under our present system, just doing our best or working harder will not be enough. The healthcare industry is on the brink of massive change.