Equilibrium in public and private health services, increased access and affordability and close looped solutions for healthcare waste are some of the most important and immediate requirements to mitigate the risks associated with COVID-19 pandemic worldwide. Senior healthcare and allied sector services experts from 8 countries discussed new solutions and strategies to mitigate the risks that have accompanied the Covid-19 pandemic, which has taken a toll on various sectors and areas during the two-day ‘Health Next 2021 – Global Health and Innovation Conference’ organised by Institute of Health Management Research University, Jaipur.
Forty speakers from countries including the USA, Germany, India, the UK and Canada participated in the session. The panel of speakers had representatives from Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Bayer, Germany, Pharmeasy, Apollo Hospitals, MedCords, Dawaa Dost, NISHTHA/ Jhpiego, Medicover Hospitals, AstraZeneca, Biopharmaceutical R&D, Gaithersburg, MD, USA, Docquity, India, Viveo Health, Ai Highway Inc, myresqr.life, TiE Global, Amity Centre for Entrepreneurship Development and Startup Oasis, Healthcare at Home India Pvt. Ltd., E4Impact Foundation, Ecoware, BOD, iKure, StanPlus/ Red Ambulances and DAYA India. The conference was organised with an aim of providing a platform to healthcare start-ups, students, alumni or people at large who have a business idea in healthcare, health tech space and want to get it nurtured at the IIHMR University’s Innovation and Incubation Centre.
“An equilibrium in public health and private health is important,” said Prof. Mario Molteni, CEO at E4Impact Foundation, adding that his Foundation in Milan has enabled this equilibrium by creating a healthy competition between the public and private sector health services.
“We create an awareness on ease of accessibility of services as everything we do is abided by compliance. This promotes the equivalence of all services that are available in the country. We promote young enterprises to come up with business models that are exciting that allow us to overcome certain gaps with the help of these organisations,” he said.
“We think the challenges in the healthcare sector have changed and mitigating these challenges and risks have become a matter of urgency post-Covid,” said Dr PR Sodani, President (Officiating), Dean IIHMR University.
Dr Gaurav Thukral, EVP & COO, Healthcare at Home India Pvt Ltd, said, “Affordability, availability and accessibility are three A’s that have always been a challenge in the healthcare sector. Despite the Ayushman Bharat scheme, there is hardly any percentage of healthcare that is state funded.”
“We see that the penetration of insurance is way lesser till date where the penetration is not more than 20 per cent when it comes to private insurance or even the state insurance. However, the National Digital Health Mission and Universal Health Coverage have played a major role in focusing on the need of insurance to reduce the out of pocket expenses of patients. The other aspect is the standardization of delivery of care where the major problem focused is the supply,”Dr Sodani added.
India has a dense population and we do not actually have no formal waste management or waste treatment, stressed Rhea Mazumdar Singhal, CEO at Ecoware.
“I think when we speak of sustainability in India or any South East Asian countries we must talk of Close looped solutions. This means what the end of the life of the product is which would help us know actually how to treat it by the end of its lifecycle. Challenges that we face is lack of innovations for closed loop solutions and measuring impact outcomes which means if you have decided to do something please measure that. This would be beneficial for the amount of health waste that is being generated each day and thus can be treated wisely,” she added.
According to Dr Santosh Marathe, COO and Unit Head at Apollo Hospitals, personalised healthcare is another critical need of the hour. “We see a paradigm shift in therapies where the organ-specific therapies through precision medicine techniques have been adopted,” he added.
Agreeing with Dr Marathe’s views, Saurabh Uboweja, Founder and Managing Partner at BOD said that use of technology and big data is beneficial to get apt patient data which has helped offer organ-specific therapies. “Collection of high-quality data especially that of patients, can help you design a treatment protocol for patients. But unfortunately, the personalised healthcare is accessible only to a limited few at the moment,” he added