Neelesh Shinde
Chief Technical Officer
Jupiter Hospital, Mumbai

Emerging trends in Indian healthcare industry

During this COVID-19 pandemic, the entire healthcare industry is facing issues like sudden demand for personal protective equipment, consumables, medicines as well as medical equipment and simultaneously there is a major decrease in revenues. It has become imperative to find innovative ways to make the industry self-sustaining and back on the growth curve.

Healthcare leaders are looking to the supply chain and procurement process to enhance operational efficiency through various emerging trends to get quality but affordable products.

When we say quality, it is not only longevity/the physical sturdiness of the product but also the technology and sensitivity of the product. Indigenous products must also strive to develop products whose algorithms match with their international counterparts.

At Jupiter hospital, as an organization’s philosophy, we have never compromised on technology. We strongly believe that such investments are done for a decade. What is best today, might be just usable after 10 years. So we have to look for latest technology, which will last for at least 10 years without getting obsolete. Obsolescence is a big challenge in healthcare.

Even in the pre-COVID era, digitization was considered the best way to transform businesses, but around the world, the pandemic situation has prioritized patient centric remote monitoring solutions and deployment of non-contact technologies.

Some of the new trends which will impact patient care in near future across hospital industry include:

Virtual critical care center help in giving clinical real time decision support by clinical expertise. This type of centre can monitor multiple peripheral ICUs on a 24×7 basis. This will take clinical expertise from the metro/city to the rural parts of India

IoMT (Internet of Medical Things) could radically help digitize key hospital areas like the ICUs, and operating rooms. An ecosystem could be created wherein ICU’s major equipment like ventilators, patient monitors, syringe and infusion pumps and anesthesia machines, navigation systems, HVAC systems etc in OTs could be synced with the hospital information system.

A robust integrated hospital information and lab information systems could help minimize documentation time. This could potentially reduce the documentation work for nursing/caregivers and more quality time could be spent with patients in handling them. This could have a direct bearing on the patient outcome.

Similarly a good EMR (electronic medical record) could make information like length of stay, mortality rate, bed occupancy, device utilization, and much more clinical and management information at the click of a button.

Tele OPD/telemedicine will enhance patient satisfactory experience. This is especially so in the current COVID-19 times wherein patients are preferring to consult a doctor from the comfort of their homes unless it is advised by the consultant to consult in person.

Home Health (healthcare at patient’s doorstep). This technology can help patients to reduce cost and improve quality of life by tracking vital parameters, sleep and respiratory monitoring, prenatal monitoring and integrating that data with electronic medical records.

Combination of these data can translate into actionable treatment plan where patient also will be able to track their health parameters. Traditionally this has been used for old patients, end of life, geriatric patients who needs monitoring more than active clinical intervention

Artificial Intelligence (AI) solution is a great step to enhance quality with accessibility. During COVID pandemic AI in the mobile X-ray solution has enabled to detect and diagnose an early as well as advance pneumothorax.

Due to that prioritization can be done for more critical patients. This will also help in patient’s care standardization. In latest CT scanners we can use AI algorithms for reduction in radiation dosages as well as contrast media. During COVID-19 pandemic AI based voice analysis application has been developed to detect COVID  patients as a pilot study.

Robotic guided systems gives precision, predictable, and accurate results. The new robotic system is use with neurosurgical instruments for stereo electroencephalography (SEEG) depth electrode placement as well as in biopsy. (SEEG) is a minimally invasive surgical procedure that is used to identify areas of the brain where epileptic seizures originate. During SEEG, doctors place electrodes in targeted brain areas, which are then monitored to precisely locate the source of the seizure.

MRI guided laser ablation. Guided laser ablation is a minimally invasive neurosurgical technique for a number of diseases, including brain tumors. Compared to traditional open surgery (craniotomy) to remove a brain tumor, MRI-guided laser ablation can reduce pain after surgery and shorten recovery time.

Ventilators modes and trends. A visualization tool to monitor the pressures responsible for exchange of gases with respect to a certain value to prevent possibilities of barotrauma. Tool, which can also monitor changing patterns of delivered tidal volume with respect to the predicted body weight.

Sophisticated dual limb ICU ventilator which has facility of non-invasive ventilation with excellent automatic leakage compensation due to which pressure parameters need not be kept higher. HFNC which can deliver higher flows of oxygen up to 60l/min. A dual mode (control and support mode) feature we can use as per patient’s response and this also reduces the sedation to the patient as well as start weaning the patient from very first breath. Breath by breath pressure in lung during gas exchange setting the trend for patient care during ARDS.

New innovations in immunoassay and clinical chemistry analyzers. In Jupiter Hospital we have installed Siemens’s Atellica machine, which include features like automated calibration and QC; Atellica Magline transport-patented, rapid, bidirectional, variable-speed sample transport system that delivers samples to and from analyzers; Multi-camera vision system-thereby saving time in tube identification and also reduce bar-code reading errors; Automated maintenance; and highest productivity per square meter; Ortho Clinical Diagnostics’ VITROS XT MicroSlides, featuring new, multi-test technology that allows labs to run two tests simultaneously on one MicroSlide, have been cleared for market by the US Food and Drug Administration.

Magnetic resonance imaging: Breakthrough in MRI coils. The engineering breakthrough in MRI coils by introducing AIR Coils, which are truly lightweight, flexible design, allowing greater positioning freedom and a comfortable patient experience.

Outlook
Challenge is that all these new trends will be currently available with all foreign manufacturers but those software /hardware solutions has to become affordable so that various healthcare providers will invest into that so supplier has to come with out of box’ options like # Pay for Use # Short term rentals # Buy now pay later to customer.

Hon’ble PM, Narendra Modi has also laid emphasis on vocal about local campaign to make India self-dependent. We need to promote local healthcare start-ups who are active in healthcare transformation with their innovative ideas. 

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