A Patient Centric Approach is Required

Niranjan Kumar Ramakrishnan, Chief Information Officer, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital speaks to Elets News Network on the sidelines of the HLF Summit.

How have been IT services helping in supply chain management for Healthcare sector?

Majority of our revenue as well as expenses go into medicines and medical equipment and everyday transactions happen at the hospital level. So these are the two major cost components for hospitals. In this case CRM really helps the hospitals to streamline their procurement process, elementary process and atleast 10-15 percent of cost can be managed by installing proper technology.

What are the solutions Sir Ganga Ram Hospital has deployed to manage cost?

Sir Ganga Ram Hospital is the earlier adopter of technology and has bagged couple of awards for being a technology oriented hospital. Most of our doctors use the employment system through mobile app. Very recent development is that we are the very few hospitals in India to have end-to-end procurement solutions where more than 100 manufacturers participate and more than 12,000 medicine plants were handled through complete eprocurement solution. We are also developing doctors’ dash boards and we are among very few hospitals in India who are making cashless cards for patients, which was introduced in dialysis department.

What challenges do you seein the adoption of technology among the healthcare industry?

The adoption of technology to share and store the information will take lot of time. For greater adoption, there should be an incentive, motive or return on investment and there should be real transfer benefits to be realized while start using the system. So wherever they thought and believe that the data has to be entered so that helps them in day today activities hospitals normally start using it. In the clinical aspect the challenges are there as there are more patients and less medical staff, and doctors cannot spend more time in entering the data of each patient. I think we should show them the real benefit of using the technology and what happens if they enter the data, show them the benefit of analytical data, the moment you start demonstrating that part adoption will start increase.

What can be done to make healthcare more patient centric?

Hospitals should ensure that a complete lifecycle of a patient kept as a primary automation process, not the typical purchase process. The approach of patient centric system is not developed though we keep talking about innovations. So patient centric health system is not strictly followed or implemented and IT should really support that aspect. Whatever technology we tried to introduce normally is in the interest of the hospital or the administration, then comes to the doctors and last to the patients, which is the reality. But this should be followed in the reverse order. So I think if we start following patient centric system the healthcare industry will change.

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