December 2011

Hospital Administration Stands on IT

Dr Vikram Shah, Founder, Chairman and Managing Director, Shalby Hospitals, Ahmadabad, focuses on providing medical facilities to the lower middle class people with the aim to use ICT effectively for everyday functions.

Hospitals use ICT every day, they use it in the administration department mostly where they check the number of patients received. We also use ICT to help amend, create and delete patient records, without ICT it would be really hard and a waste of time in the hospital.

Private healthcare cost in India is actually much cheaper than other parts of the world including Thailand, Philippines which are considered third world countries providing first world treatment just like India. Moreover, 40 percent of Indian population today is not able to afford 2-square meal a day, than how are they going to afford the cost of the medicines. Thus, there are substantial efforts required to uplift the level of these people, in order to provide the affordable healthcare to all.

Adapting Technology

In Shalby, each and every process is managed by in-house software such as purchase process, MIS reports, MRD Management, Pharmacy Management etc. Some of the most modern technology used are electronic health records, chronic disease management systems, computerised practitioner order entry, clinical decision support system, electronic transfer of prescription, electronic appointment booking, personal health record, telemedicine , RFID, bar-coding and business intelligence. The hospital took few more steps towards adapting new technologies by recently acquiring plasma sterilizer, 5-part blood cell counter, Vitros 250 dry chemistry analyser, ECQI immunology analyser and fully-automated urine analyser-U411.

Keeping abreast with the globally developing technologies is an integral part of Shalbys mission. The hospital has invested heavily in IT infrastructure with CISCO and Nortel networking infrastructure. It has fully integrated Hospital Management and Information System (HMIS) which is designed to manage every aspect of information flow and control across the hospital. Right from vendor records to patient records, everything is electronically managed. Imaging technology has enhanced further by incorporating a mini OACS radiology viewing system. This enables doctors to view patients scan online, saving time taken for reporting.

The hospital offers more space per patient for increased comfort and at-home feeling with the patient area of over 900 sq. feet. It has also incorporated infection control measures like HEPA filters, laminar air flow, body exhaust system, plasma steriliser and maquet operating tables. The hospital also initiated cardiac stem cell transplant, ozone therapy for non-invasive and painless uterine fibroid embolism and Kyphoplasty to treat painful, progressive vertebral compression fractures (VCFs) in the western region. It is believed that this is the first hospital in Gujarat to procure fractional laser for high-end cosmetic treatments. ICT has penetrated in to providing emergency services. Emergency has been handled quickly due to Code red and code blue SMS application.

Need of ICT

Yes, with the implementation of new technologies, we have been able to reduce the cost of manpower and other stationary and administrative costs considerably. Today, the need to provide healthcare facilities to lower middle class at the right time is very important. In addition, some treatments are not available to all the classes. However, the way high quality treatments are available in western and advanced countries are at present not available in India. All stakeholders including the government should work in the right direction to overcome the challenges and ensuring quality healthcare for all.

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