Established with a clear vision of making quality care affordable for common man, Sahara Hospital in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh is a shining example of how hospitals can bridge the gap between quality health care and affordability, jointly say Anil Vikram Singh, Senior Advisor, Sahara India Pariwar (Sahara Hospital) and Dr Mazhar Husain, Director, Medical Health(Chief Neurosurgen), Sahara Hospital, in an interview with Arpit Gupta of Elets News Network (ENN).
What is the vision behind Sahara Hospital?
It is the vision of our Managing Worker and Chairman Saharasri Subrata Roy. He realised that good hospitals should be provided to the common man where they can receive proper treatment. People used to go to Delhi and Mumbai for treatment. He was clear in his vision that he didn’t want to make it a profit making business. In fact, he wanted to give something back to the society. It was decided that WHATEVER profit is made it would be used to expand the hospital and its facilities. We have set new standards of patient care. We always ensure that the treatment is correct and affordable for the patient.
Common man has this perception that private hospitals tend to overcharge them. How Sahara is trying to break this myth?
We organise camps and set up OPDs in nearby cities. Patients from cities like Kanpur and Allahabad frequently come to our hospital. We keep sending our doctors to other cities. In collaboration with schools and colleges, we try to raise awareness about the basic healthcare facilities. There is no hidden cost for patients at Sahara. Patient care charges are transparent and itemised. Our chairman’s vision and our efforts are to reach poor people, create awareness and provide them better healthcare services.
Do you think we need to pay more attention to emergency care and services?
Definitely, we provide round-the-clock emergency services to our patients. Doctors are available all the time. If any other specialist is required, they are made available as a when needed on an urgent basis.
What is your hospital’s roadmap to improve its services?
We are in the process of enriching our specialist tool and adding more facilities to the hospital like radiation oncology, etc.
How is Sahara Hospital transforming healthcare in India?
Sahara Hospital is transforming healthcare in India in many ways. It is trying to bridge the gap between quality health care and affordability. The Sahara Hospital is a NABH-accredited hospital and the department of Lab Medicine is NABL accredited. With dedicated, expert and experienced doctors around, one is assured of quality, compassionate care and the most important – healing touch.
Please tell us about the services being offered by Sahara Hospital.
The hospital provides high quality and cost effective services, coupled with the warmth and caring attitude.
Sahara Hospital is the only corporate tertiary care set up in Eastern UP. As a multispecialty, tertiary care destination, the hospital offers integrated quality healthcare with the availability of all super specialties and latest generation diagnostic facilities under one roof. It is complimenting the public sector and the charity hospitals in this region. It is the only private set up in the region that performs Kidney Transplant and Bone Marrow Transplant.
Sahara Hospital provides its services in the rural areas also through various health care camp activities and mobile dispensaries which cater to rural areas in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Nepal.
Sahara Hospital is currently operating with 53 specialties, 8 support departments, and a 147-beded critical care unit. The hospital has all the diagnostic services available round the clock. This includes Radiology, Lab Medicine, Endoscopy, and special diagnostic services,-all located under one roof. This also includes 4D Ultrasound, latest generation Cardiac CT, MRI, a Cardiac Cath Lab.
What were your key achievements in 2016?
The key achievements of the year 2016 are:
● Received award for the Best Multispecialty hospital in the non metro category from ICICI Lombard and CNBC Awaaz 18
● Successfully completed the Surveillance Assessment by NABH
● Successfully completed the Re assessment of Dept. of Lab Medicine
● Received a certificate of merit by ABP News for Healthcare Destination
Sahara Hospital is currently operating with 53 specialties, eight support departments, and a 147-beded critical care unit. The hospital has all the diagnostic services available round the clock
We have been nominated as the best multispecialty hospital for the following awards:
● National quality excellence award 2017 for best multispecialty hospital in Uttar Pradesh
● Rose of Paracelsus award constituted by the Arab Medical, Health Association
● India Risk Management Award, Season 3 constituted by ICICI Lombard and CNC TV 18
● DL Shah Quality Award for the coming year
● World Health and Wellness Congress and Awards 2017
What are your plans for the next year?
Sahara Hospital’s key plans for the year 2017 include:
- Commence Radiation Oncology
- To Develop IVF Centre
- Expand Medical Tourism
- Open a Liver Transplant Unit
Which key challenges you see are creating roadblocks for improving healthcare delivery system in India?
The healthcare situation in India when we look across the country in a cross-section is of course grim. There are many challenges that are creating roadblocks for improving healthcare delivery system in India.
In rural India, there is a lack of quality infrastructure, dearth of qualified medical functionaries, and access to basic medicines and medical facilities is difficult.
There is lack of education, knowledge and awareness at the grass roots. The family head is responsible for all the healthcare related decisions. People are habituated to domestic cures for their ailments and are very apprehensive about using medicines. They only visit a doctor as the last resort after having tried everything they have been advised by relatives and neighbours.
There is lack of effective implementation of government initiatives at the grassroots level.
How is Sahara Hospital making tertiary healthcare more inclusive? Please tell us about the key initiatives the hospital has taken to deliver quality healthcare to the poor.
Traditionally, the government is the major provider of healthcare services for the poor, especially in rural and semi-urban areas. Charitable trusts and NGOs have played a complementary role.
Sahara Hospital is one such hospital that is located in tier II city to address the challenge of health inequities, improving healthcare access and balancing quality care with affordability. It is catering to the population that is based in whole of UP, neighboring areas of Bihar, Nepal etc. It is providing inclusiveness through proximity and providing quality healthcare at an affordable cost. It is a medical destination for people of Purvanchal.
Sahara Hospital conducts rural outreach programs that include camps and village door to door activities.
Sahara Hospital is one such hospital that is located in tier II city to address the challenge of health inequities, improving healthcare access and balancing quality care with affordability. It is catering to the population that is based in whole of UP, neighbouring areas of Bihar and Nepal
The camps organised by Sahara Hospital on various diseases provide awareness and education on the diseases and its control. Also, such camps provide free of cost investigations that strongly conveys the message of preventive healthcare.
How the hospital is leveraging new technologies to improve operational efficiency and quality of its services?
Sahara Hospital is committed to leverage on best of technology and technical knowhow and innovation to offer every patient best in class service. We have best in class medical equipments that incorporate latest technology.
The hospital adopts state of the art technology in all the medical equipments. Hospital has introduced Hospital Information System (HIS) for managing hospital operations in the most efficient and effective way.
We are gearing up with providing SMS service for appointments and Lab Medicine reports even on email.
There already exists a Pneumatic tube system in the department of Lab medicine. A hospital laboratory is often a place of intense activity: countless samples arrive here daily and are analyzed, evaluated, and the results passed on, and all of that under enormous time pressure. By using pneumatic tube systems samples taken are sent for analysis immediately, without running time-consuming errands.
Our hospital is also gearing up for an e-prescription service to replace the legendary doctor scrawl on hand written prescriptions. Patient histories, diagnostic reports, discharge summaries and other vital information regarding an existing patient will all be digitally stored so they can be accessed remotely by the patient as well as by any of the Consultant of our hospital (with informed patient consent). Once this all comes together, it will be a useful tool in emergency situations where speed is of the essence. Sahara Hospital takes pride in sharing one of the patients observation “Best can not be, Bettered more.”