Express Pharma

This Summit will discuss digital solutions to boost reach, revenues

In an interview with Express Pharma, Dr Rajendra Pratap Gupta, Founder of Health Parliament, delves into India's digital health landscape and its impact on healthcare delivery. He also elaborates on the key highlights of the Global Digital Health Summit (GDHS), Expo & Innovation Awards 2023, and its initiatives to shape the future of healthcare in India

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How do you see the global digital health scenario evolving in India, given the vulnerability of our health data, yet the promise of health insights to drive better health outcomes?

Digital Health is now being used at different levels in the value chain and across the continuum of care. For seeking healthcare-related information, seven out of 10 people will search the internet, similarly for medical information. With Instagram becoming an advertisement platform for healthcare products and services, patients know more about technology-based solutions than doctors. 

When it comes to providers, they are still to accept the reality, but now, technology-based solutions are there for all the challenges healthcare faces. While this means that we have achieved a high level of technical maturity, the care providers’ competence is not up to that level. Also, there is a fear of data loss and patient loss with tech systems being hacked, and these fears are genuine and should be addressed. 

By 2025, I believe one of the four healthcare providers including doctors will be using digital health actively, and patients’ needs will drive this change. 

What are the policy initiatives we need for India to reap the insights of digital health solutions available today?

The Government has already made its intent clear in the National Health Policy 2017 about creating the Digital Health Ecosystem and has moved to institutionalising technology adoption in healthcare through ABDM. The National Health Authority is doing an outstanding job. We need to invest more and enhance budgets for ABDM, make ABHA numbers mandatory for seeking healthcare in the country, and allocate one per cent of the digital health budget for data security solutions. 

Against this backdrop, what are the highlights of the Global Digital Health Summit (GDHS), Expo & Innovation Awards 2023 scheduled for September 1 and 2 at Mumbai’s Jio World Convention Center? 

We are aware of the fact that there is a lot of excitement about digital health and emerging technologies, but people need the right guidance to help them decide and embark on their digital transformation journey. Out of every four CEOs in pharma and healthcare organisations I spoke with, I could see the excitement but also the lack of the granular knowledge to implement digital health. This Summit is to help the healthcare and the life sciences industry to discuss the solutions they can implement to boost reach and revenues and have better clinical outcomes. We have got in top global digital health leaders, doctors and hospital administrators from India who are implementing digital health and have benefitted from IT. We hope to demystify that technology requires large investments and also, for doctors, technology takes away the personal touch, and how we can better manage chronic patients in the digital age. This is the first healthcare summit that hosts a session with patients on their expectations from digital health. 

How does it take forward the learnings from last year’s Summit?

Last year, we focussed on a few critical questions like return on investment (RoI) in digital health, leadership, and segments to focus. It was a policy and strategy summit, and this is the solutions and implementation summit. We are discussing solutions to implement. 

What is the audience mix for the GDHS 2023 and what can they expect in terms of speakers, topics, masterclasses, actionable insights etc?  

The audience of GDHS includes senior officials of the Government, global leaders in digital health, three Presidents of Global D