Digital Strategy for HealthCare in India
The healthcare sector in India is growing at a tremendous speed owing to investments by public as well as private partners. The total industry size is expected to be $160 Billion by 2017 and $280 Billion by 2020. Also, 50 new technologies are expected to develop during FY16.
Per ca-pita healthcare expenditure is expected as a CAGR of 5% during FY 2008-15 to US $68.6 Billion by 2015. Greater penetration of health insurance and increasing economic prosperity is also giving a boost to investment in these sectors.
Several initiatives by government and foreign investments have also contributed to development of this sector. Despite of all these efforts, there is always a spread of Dengue and Chikungunya during rainy seasons and spread of viral diseases is common throughout the year. The spread of these diseases does not take place in a day or so, but takes place in an interval. If the start of this spread is detected well before time, then the entire situation can be controlled. Our Digital Strategy aims at making healthcare facilities ready to meet the situation when required. We wish to make this happen using cloud, data analytics and regular updating of data.
A software will be installed at every hospital, clinic, chemist and medical lab which will keep the details of every patient. Each time he visits a hospital or clinic, a special id is generated for that treatment at a system at that place. This includes age, gender, address, symptoms and disease with which he/she is diagnosed with (left blank if not sure), any tests recommended and next visit date. His AdharCard will be used as his unique identity.
Attributes of table:
- AdharCard number used to identify a customer
- Transaction id: unique id for every treatment
- Address: To predict area wise spread of disease
- Disease: can be left vacant or can be mentioned
- Status: As treatment proceeds, this can be updated accordingly
For every transaction a separate id is generated and if the same disease is being treated for long, status value will be updated accordingly. Also, value of status can be updated only using a medical facility’s system and only when the patient visits the same. He goes to the medical lab, gives his fingerprint, gets his transaction id detected and then undergoes the test. All this is updated in the database along with result. He then consults the doctor and purchases the subscribed medicine. The chemist and the doctor keep updating the database at cloud. To know the status, the customer can anytime see his status from a mobile app or web app. In this way he is kept updated on his improvement and what test or medicine is being undertaken. Also, cost of expenditure is being tracked and how long it takes for a disease to cure. Based on this, he is asked for a feedback. If a disease takes too long to be cured, then it is notified at government level. In this way, regular updates are sent to government, medical labs, hospitals, clinics, chemists, citizens and pharmaceutical companies in the form of reports.
Government: Through the implementation of this software, government is given information about spread of diseases in each and every part of the country. This will result in measures to stop the spread and be prepared based on predictions made using previously available data.
- Medical labs: They can plan their facilities accordingly and keep track of patients coming and make preparations
- Chemists: They can place their medicine orders depending upon data they get from the software
- Hospitals: They can be better prepared with number of beds and equipment. Therefore, next year onwards or well before season strikes, hospitals can be well prepared.
- Clinics: Doctors can plan be prepared for the increase in number of patients coming.
- Citizens: They will be the biggest benefiters. They will get day to day updates on what the situation is around their locality.
Reports can be generated on daily/weekly/monthly/yearly basis and the entire country will be aware of the situation.
Social networking can be another source of data. All the posts regarding diseases can be interpreted and be shown on the software. This will show the scale on which impact has been created because of spread of disease.
All the data will be present on cloud and be updated on regular basis. The cloud will provide all the data analytics and report generation functions. This will be enabled using software as a service. The cloud should be operated by government and entire information will be available to anyone and can be accessed from any place.
Every medical facility will have a pad, which will be specifically made for this purpose and having the software. This pad will be connected to the cloud and can update anytime once the patient has verified his fingerprint. The data regarding finger print will be kept at cloud and there will be just Interface at the facility side. Each device will cost around Rs500 if produced on a massive scale along with software. This investment has to be shared between the facility and government. Also, this will be placed at the doctor’s table and will connect using a fingerprint scanner. Then and there the doctor can fill in the values.
At the government level, since this involves a very important use for the country, the cloud will be purchased and maintained by a government team. They will put the database and the software at the cloud. The software will generate reports as per the requirement. The reports can also be sending directly to media websites for the country to know
- Medical labs: As soon as a doctor recommends a test to a patient, the lab can immediately send a notification about discounts and latest offers. Also, there will be a provision to directly book a slot beforehand or prefer a home visit for test. Labs will also be ready with facilities on time and reduce waiting as they can monitor the increase in spread of diseases.
Their investment is shared by both government and the lab. Their inventory management can improve as their orders will be all based on the data that is helping them predict items to re-order and when to re-order.
- Pharmaceutical companies: These companies can use the information obtained from this software to manufacture medicines as per the demand in a particular season and also supply to effected areas well in advance.
- Chemist: They can pre order medicines and maintain their inventory based on the reports about increase in number of patients about a particular disease.
- Hospitals: They can maintain their inventory of injections, medicines and increase the number of beds according to the reports. This will help tackle the situation before it arrives.
This entire strategy is based on how effectively data analytics can be used to improve the health care facilities in the country. Following are benefits of using data analytics:
- Visualisation: With proper graphs showing the spread of disease can help authorities take decisions on where and how the changes have to be made
- Data analysis: By using previously available data and keeping factors like rainfall, construction of roads, it can be easily predicted on what scale a particular disease might spread and in which area. This will help in getting area specific, gender specific, age group specific etc. reports.
By implementing this digital strategy, we can improve the health care facilities in the country. This will also increase in people being aware on what diseases are being spread and what precautions can be taken. All the service providers can also manage their supply chains well and meet the demand whenever required. Spread of a disease can be detected well beforehand and steps can be take area wise to solve the problem.
The software will be customized for every stakeholder. Following are the different features of software for each stakeholder:
- Patient: Since a patient will avail maximum benefits from this software, he will have a variety of features. He can access the software from any place using his smartphone. He will be logged in using his adhar card number or finger print. A single phone can have a number of people who can log in and use. This will be because; a child or an elderly person may not possess a smartphone. In this way they can use the facility of those having smartphones. This software can also be accessed from a laptop using a web application. The user can see what all tests are recommended for him and what the due date to visit the doctor is. He can also look for a hospital or a clinic or a lab based on location or budget or speciality. He can also book an appointment with a doctor or time for a test at a lab. Availability of beds will also be shown through the application. In case of an emergency, the person just need to click on emergency button and an immediate list of nearest hospitals will come even without Internet connectivity. The app will provide just an interface, to view and book the beds or look for medical facilities. Entire processing of requests or storage of data will take place at the Cloud. Another benefit of this software will be to provide knowledge. It will keep people updated about the spread of diseases, their symptoms, their precautionary measures and nearest medical facilities to approach in case of a situation.
- Hospitals: They will have a regular update on data on coming from various sources. This will inform them about the growth in demand for beds and doctors. They can therefore keep a certain number of beds available at all times. They can also predict on how many more beds should be made available. They will also act as sources of supplying a huge amount of data, as they have OPDs, operations, test labs and all other facilities required by patients. This data will when uploaded on cloud will give a better picture about the situation in the city, as people living little far away also prefer going to a particular hospital. This information will tell from how far people come, information which can help in improving medical facilities around their locality. Hospital will have a number of pads, each having the software connected to each other and also to the main server of the hospital. Any facility availed by the patient will be made an immediate entry in the software and this will also help in billing procedure. Patients can also provide an immediate feedback. Hospitals can also view reports whenever they wish, helping them to plan their supply chain. They can order those drugs which are in demand, at that season and increase their number of doctors accordingly. Also, they can receive information from nearby hospitals which will help them interpret the situation in nearby places. Once the patient discharges, one pad is entered with discharge and update takes place across the system. All the devices are connected to the main server of the hospital and it is connected to the cloud.
- Medical test labs: At their side, the pad will have the interface of the software. All the processing and data about customer will be kept at the cloud. Whenever customer arrives, he will verify his fingerprint. All the details will be made available regarding his treatment and whatever tests he has to undergo. Also, if has pre booked the time slot, then that will also come up. Now, after the test, it will be updated that the test has been performed. Later, when results arrive, the entire report will be uploaded along with interpretation. At their side, the labs can put special offers to attract customers which will be viewed whenever a need arises for that customer. They can also view reports on how many customers are coming for a particular test. This will allow them to better plan their supply chain and reduce wait time for customer. Also, they can have a request for tests from home at the cloud. In this way, a new business model arises which allows them to go online and increase their reach. Players like Dr.Batra labs which have a chain of labs can offer discounts and also tell where the nearest lab is located.
- Chemists: It is very common in India that people buy medicines without prescription. With this software, all the purchases will have to be prescribed, updated on software and when the chemist sees it, and then only a purchase can be made. A chemist can also see where all diseases are spreading and at what pace. This will allow him to plan his purchases of medicines. He will also have a pad and customer will have to verify his identity. The medicine prescribed will be given according to the update.
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