Dr Devlina Chakravarty, COO & Medical Director, Artemis Health Institute,Â Gurgaon, believes that there should be a seamless integration of different spectrumsÂ of healthcare. While speaking to Shally Makin, she sheds light on the dedicationÂ with which Artemis is providing care to its patients
What is the role of ICT in hospitals? How far haveÂ you implemented it in your hospital?
Artemis has created a strong IT infrastructure toÂ strengthen its services. Spread across a total area ofÂ 525,000 square feet the facility focuses on offering patientsÂ technology-backed world-class healthcare deliveredÂ through leading medical professionals. ArtemisÂ has received Most Promising Start-Up of the Year 2007Â award by Express Healthcare magazine and Best ITÂ Implementation for the Year 2008 from PC Quest magazineÂ for Hospital Information System. The hospital has
one of the best integrated ICT systems. All the medicalÂ information is stored on EMR, which is seamlessly integratedÂ with HIS and RIS. When a patient walks in, theÂ medical records are already with the hospital, furtherÂ delivering effective healthcare. Recommendations of aÂ doctor can be recorded at every visit of the patient.
Please brief us about the various technologies,Â software applications, medical and diagnosticÂ equipments being used in the hospital toÂ providing effective healthcare.
Artemis provides highest level of inpatient monitoring,Â paperless and film-less hospital information systemÂ along with top of the line communication technology.Â Seamless integration with the Hospital Information SystemÂ in each department is enabled. Each patient (InpatientÂ or OPD) who comes to Artemis is given a dedicatedÂ code. All reports, data, medicine prescriptions areÂ uploaded on the system and even if the patient walksÂ in to AHI after a year, he need not carry any reports orÂ files. AHI systems will have a copy of the records.
The doctors can type their prescriptions and give it toÂ the patient. We have in place an intelligent critical patientÂ monitoring system with clinical decision support applicationÂ backed by portal imaging technology. It is an integratedÂ system through which the data of the ICU patientsÂ (BP/ heart beat, etc.) is updated and recorded. AHI hasÂ a web enabled Health Information System, which allowsÂ the authorised doctors to access patient data from anywhereÂ in the world. Even when the doctor is travelling, heÂ can offer a consultation or advice on the line of treatment.Â Appropriate measures are taken for protecting the data.Â The real time Image Guided Radiation Therapy (IGRT) isÂ one of its kinds in North India. This allows for radiationÂ to be delivered exactly where required, with minimal impactÂ on the surrounding healthy cells. An EndovascularÂ Suite equipped with the latest in 3D rotational imaging toÂ perform neuro-interventional, cardiac catheterisation orÂ peripheral endovascular procedures with precision. AnÂ in-house bio-repository and a 24-hour blood bank withÂ the facility to conduct Individual Donor NAT (Nucleic AcidÂ Amplification Test) is also a part of the IT systems enrolledÂ in the hospital.
How do you see Artemis standing upright in theÂ healthcare industry?
Artemis is striving towards creating a niche in the industry.Â The expansion of the institute to Delhi-NCR andÂ other places is in the pipeline. It believes in providingÂ excellent clinical outcomes, good services and becomingÂ a preferred destination for international patients.Â Industry is innovating very fast; new technologies areÂ being brought in all the time. There is a dire need ofÂ trained professionals in the industry. For many technicians,Â IT is a new field. We intend to judiciously useÂ technology because it has increased the healthcareÂ costs. In order to quickly incorporate IT in hospitals weÂ need to keep tangible benefits. The vendors provide usÂ with trained technicians and software experts to helpÂ doctors and the existing staff to operate the new systemsÂ and equipment. This proves to be a cost effectiveÂ method, it also saves training time. With such high endÂ latest equipment and infrastructure for predictive, diagnostic and therapeutic imaging, the organisation can provideÂ best possible treatment to the patient.
âArtemis is striving towards creatingÂ a niche in the industry. The expansionÂ of the institute to Delhi-NCRÂ and other places is in the pipeline.Â It believes in providing excellentÂ clinical outcomes, good services andÂ becoming a preferred destination forÂ international patientsâ
Do you think such services have enhanced the level ofÂ healthcare delivery?
Healthcare industry in the India is a sunrise industry. We haveÂ so many hospitals with best technology, IT back up and highlyÂ trained doctors and best infrastructure. There is a shortage ofÂ very well trained professionals and technicians. Since IT is theÂ backbone of healthcare institutions, we are trying to poachÂ experienced and qualified doctors to be part of tech-orientedÂ hospital. We need high numbers of medical-IT professionals.Â Artemis follows patient-centric processes conforming to InternationalÂ Patient Protocols, thereby establishing new standardsÂ for service and care. The new arrivals have to basically do lot ofÂ learning on the job. A lot of reluctance was seen from the staffÂ initially, but as doctors have realised the potential of IT, the acceptanceÂ amongst the staff and doctors has increased.
Do you think ICT has started providing emergencyÂ services as well? If so, what are the services beingÂ provided in your hospital?
Aero medical transportation is provided to the patientsÂ for emergency evacuation by air. It includes search and rescueÂ systems. Skilled personnel are transported to the sceneÂ of accident, along with equipment and medical material toÂ provide on-site. Inter-hospital or intra-hospital transfers, nationalÂ or international repatriation, and transportation ofÂ donor organs and drugs is also offered. Domestic andÂ international ambulance services are provided in case ofÂ emergency. Almost 40-45 percent conversion rate has beenÂ observed in case of critical patients, as the services providedÂ to them are world class. However, there is a need ofÂ a centralised emergency number with fleet of ambulances,Â which can provide effective service. Ambulance plays aÂ big role in trauma and accident. Most private hospitals lookÂ for their own patients. But the challenge is how to take care ofÂ the patient in case of a road accident. The issue of transporting
the patient to the nearest hospital in case of an accident mustÂ be jointly addressed by the government and the hospitals.
How do you see the advancements in the field ofÂ radiology over last few decades? Which areas ofÂ healthcare have mostly been benefited through suchÂ technologies?
Radiology has progressed in leaps and bound. TodayÂ almost anything and everything can be diagnosed by radiology. initially only x-ray and ultrasound has moved on to PETÂ CT scanners, high Tesla MRI which does both anatomical andÂ radiological imaging. Interventional radiology is the need of the our today, because so many procedures require diagnosis ofÂ the disease. Radiology equipments, including ultrasound, canÂ be of therapeutic use in some cases. It thus provides a simplistic,Â cost effective model of treatment leading to lower mortalityÂ and morbidity rate. The clinical outcomes are so good thatÂ the cost is valued for money and the ambience is excellent. InÂ times to come, India can become the hub of medical tourism. IÂ think itâs the great time for the healthcare industry to make hayÂ while the sun shines.