Mumbai: Despite Prime Minister Narendra Modi's push for digitalisation, less than one per cent of doctors nationwide are embracing digital technology for patient treatment or consultation. Dr. Rajendra Gupta, the Founder of the International Patients’ Union (IPU) and the organiser of the Global Digital Health Summit 2023, highlighted this disparity.
The summit, taking place at the Jio Convention Centre in Bandra Kurla Complex from September 1 to 2, aims to address the role of technology in healthcare and encourage wider adoption among doctors and stakeholders.
Aim of summit
The summit aims to inform doctors and all stakeholders that technology plays an important role in the current healthcare scenario, and it's essential for everyone to be part of it despite existing loopholes. The summit introduced transformative initiatives, including the SMART Hospitals’ Suite, SMART Clinicians’ Suite, Executive Leadership Programme, Neither Share nor Learn Campaign, and Feel Something, Do Something Initiative. These initiatives address key challenges faced by healthcare providers and startups in the rapidly evolving digital landscape.
Dr. Rajendra stated, "Currently, there are 10 to 12 lakh doctors across India, of which only 10,000 to 12,000 have shown interest in digital technology and are using it for treating their patients. We are shifting our focus from thought leadership to practical implementation, addressing the critical challenges in implementing Digital Health at scale. With discussions on solutions for clinicians, the pharmaceutical industry, and small healthcare organizations, as well as the role of Start-Ups, Generative AI, Robotics, and Emerging Technologies in healthcare, this summit is a must-attend event for anyone in the industry."
He added, "Patients who have suffered from diseases ranging from cancer to diabetes, TB, etc., emphasised in this summit that today technology has made a huge contribution in the treatment of various diseases, which should be adopted by the doctors treating them."
India will change in next 5 years: Dr. Devi Shetty
TB activist Ganesh Acharya stressed the importance of involving patients in the design of digital health solutions and the inclusion of Artificial Intelligence tools in TB treatment.
Dr. Devi Shetty, Chairman & Executive Director of Narayana Healthcare, stated that within the next five years, India will be able to provide quality healthcare to every citizen, regardless of their financial status, with digitization of healthcare and universal health insurance being important enablers in this direction.
According to Dr. Shetty, even in the most developed countries like the US, one in two hundred patients admitted to a hospital dies due to medical error. He mentioned that poor communication is a significant factor and mentioned plans for systems that will provide diagnostic reports to doctors on their mobiles as soon as tests are done, potentially saving lives.
Dr. Shashank Joshi, President of the India Academy of Diabetes and Ex-Chair of the International Diabetes Federation, discussed the adoption of technology in diabetes care, noting the acceleration of technology adoption during the COVID-19 pandemic.
He highlighted the use of digital tools like AI to create customized solutions for patients and the potential for precise therapy with evidence-based medicine in place.
Dr. Vijay Harikisan Bang, President of the Cardiological Society of India, emphasized the growth of technology in the field of cardiology and the importance of addressing data and patient security issues when using digital tools like AI.
Dr. Hrishikesh D Pai, President of The Federation of Obstetric and Gynaecological Societies of India, discussed women's digital health issues, emphasizing the need for policies to increase awareness and address barriers in rural areas and the cost of implementing new technologies.
Dr. Rajendra Pratap Gupta, Chair of the Global Digital Health Summit, Expo, and Innovation Awards, stated that this year's Digital Health Solutions Summit in Mumbai is set to be historic.