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CII Health Summit – Industry experts bat for “Health for All”

Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) National Healthcare Council Chairman and Medanta- The Medicity Chairman and Managing Director Dr Naresh Trehan said that their goal is to ensure “Health for All”.

“Our goal is to ensure Health for All. The healthcare ecosystem should engage and collaborate with other sectors to achieve sustainable health,” Dr Trehan said while speaking at the 20th edition of the CII Health Summit 2023, held at Hotel Le Meridian, New Delhi on Saturday.

In his opening address, Dr Naresh Trehan said that the government must focus on healthcare sector due to its significance.

“Instead of relying on smaller volumes and higher margins, we should transition to higher volume and lower margins that cater to the public of the country. Our goal is to ensure that the entire population of India is serviced, and healthcare is democratized,” Dr Trehan said.

“The road ahead involves crucial aspects like delivery and essential elements, encompassing nursing colleges, training programs, and medical colleges. We are nearly halfway to where we need to be. The focus needs to shift to tier two, three towns. Addressing and discussing how the healthcare ecosystem should engage and every sector should collaborate instead of working in silos is vital as we strive to elevate our efforts,” he added.

SP Singh Baghel, Minister of State, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare said that the government is focused on preventive care and holistic wellness.

“Through technology, we can reach people from hard-to-reach areas. The health sector should focus on quality care, and this we can achieve through innovation. Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (ABPM-JAY) is a flagship scheme of the Government of India. PM-JAY is the largest health assurance scheme in the world and aims to provide a health cover of Rs 5 lakh per family per year,” Baghel said.

Dilip Jose, Co-Chairman of CII National Healthcare Council and Managing Director and CEO, of Manipal Health Enterprises Private Limited added that Technology has always existed, and during Covid, its importance increased significantly.

“The awareness among patients to assert their right is noteworthy progress made in last decade. This is our responsibility to preserve patient rights. Nowadays, people often skip visiting General Practitioner. This trend is increasing and increasing load on specialists and super specialists,” Jose said.

“Encouraging individuals to follow the ladder of the healthcare sector not only saves time but also reduces expenses for consumers. This ensures a more efficient and cost-effective healthcare journey in Tier- two and three cities. Additionally, social determinants of health is very important and we should focus on preventive part of health. As an ecosystem, we have the opportunity to make patients comfortable and gain their trust, turning these challenges into achievable milestones,” he added.

Himanshu Baid, Chairman CII National Medical Technology Forum and Managing Director, Polymed deliberated that Medtech has undergone a significant transformation in the last decade.

“We’ve witnessed government emphasis on Research and Development (R&D), and now, on the ground, hundreds of companies are actively contributing to this industry. While we initially imported basic products, there’s now substantial activity in this sector. It’s time to promote local manufacturing and bring in technology to accelerate it,” Baid said.

Shashank ND, Chairman, CII Subcommittee on Digital Health and Founder & CEO, Practo further added that by introducing the internet to doctors to making digital diagnostics mainstream, we have come a long way.

“As we leverage our preference for private healthcare, self-regulation is key. Each organisation’s commitment will ensure evolving standards, paving the way for a better future. There is a need to increase trust among patients for private healthcare providers,” Shashank said.

Segar Sampathkumar, Co Chairman, CII Taskforce on Health Insurance and Director- Health Insurance General Insurance Council (GIC) in the session discussed that today, it’s an opportunity for healthcare to become more affordable.

“The time has come for health insurance to actively participate in providing predetermined free costs, ensuring much more accessible healthcare. There is need for simplification of insurance process and standards,” he said.

Rajiv Vasudevan, Co-Chairman, CII National Taskforce on Ayush and Founder and CEO, AyurVAID Hospitals added that in embracing sustainable healthcare, Ayush has been a cornerstone in shaping India’s health landscape.

“It’s gaining wider acceptance across healthcare sectors, from cancer rehabilitation to various preventive care. Our focus should be on fostering a robust healthcare culture that is truly India specific,” Vasudevan said.

Joy Chakraborty, Chief Operating Officer, PD Hinduja Hospital and Medical Research Centre adding to the road ahead and added that, to begin with, there’s a notable shift in the way patients are treated, viewing them as consumers in the healthcare landscape.

“Providers should be more accessible and approachable. Digital health has played a crucial role in facilitating this positive change. Another significant way forward should be RAISE, future of healthcare delivery, where our focus extends beyond profit to encompass services,” Chakraborty said.

“Our ongoing goal is to empower consumers and providers to effectively seek and deliver services through technology, addressing the current needs. In metros and tier two, three cities, reducing the gap and enhancing manpower is imperative for continued positive progress,” he added.

Santhosh Mathew, Country Lead- Public Policy and Finance, Bill and Mellinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) added, the key focus lies on government involvement, both at the state and central levels, recognizing the potential for positive change.

“Allocating 4.5 per cent of the GDP to total health expenditure underscores the commitment to healthcare improvement. To address out-of-pocket expenditure, there’s a call for collective action and pooling resources in the healthcare sector,” he said.

Dr Om Manchanda, Managing Director of Dr Lal Pathlabs Limited said that the diagnostic industry, with its network of labs and advanced technology, holds the key to healthcare solutions.

“Building a scaled organization has been instrumental in addressing the fragmented nature of healthcare. The primary challenge lies in using the most expensive resource and time for delivery. The solution lies in consulting primary healthcare services rather than specialists for simple health issues, leveraging new-age technology for cost-effective healthcare delivery. Let’s elevate awareness for a more accessible and efficient healthcare approach,” Dr Manchanda said.

Themed “R.A.I.S.E. HEALTHCARE – Responsible, Accessible, Innovative, Sustainable, Equitable,” the summit brought together thought leaders, policymakers, and industry experts. They engaged in vibrant debates and discussions on the most critical challenges facing India and the world in healthcare delivery.

The summit aimed to resolve issues and propose innovative solutions, ultimately leading to improved patient outcomes and experiences.

At the summit, CII along with Mckinsey, released the report on “Healthcare in India- Poised for a leap” in the presence of SP Singh Baghel, Dr Naresh Trehan and Dilip Jose. This report shares the road ahead for India’s healthcare sector over the coming decade.

In the run up to the Health Summit 2023, CII has also organised a capacity building workshop on Strengthening Health Facility to empower and strengthen Mid capped and Smaller hospitals from tier two and three towns of India.

The session themes were Operational Efficiency, Navigating Ayushmann Bharat Digital Mission (ABDM), and Healthcare Quality included expert talks and discussion on ground problems and best possible solutions to tackle the challenges, aiming to make quality healthcare more affordable for all. ANI

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