“From boardroom meetings to virtual meetings, it was quite difficult for us,” Anuroop Sehgal, Cluster IT Lead (North), Fortis Healthcare Ltd recalled at the second edition of Elets Digital Health Conclave held with a theme ‘Reimagining Healthcare with Technology’.
Sehgal observed that teleconsultations were present in the pre Covid-19 pandemic era, but its application boomed during the pandemic. Healthcare providers and patients widely adopted teleconsultations for a cure. Besides, it addressed the issues of lack of medical staff and infrastructure in the country. Its acceptance by patients helped to avoid the spread of the Covid-19 during the pandemic.
According to Sehgal, E-payments grew during the pandemic and helped private players survive. “Private players need to survive. We had to see how to collect payments from patients and how to implement discount coupons.” The Cluster IT Lead (North) of Fortis Healthcare’s observations were in the light of how CIOs have digitally empowered almost all stakeholders that helped to manage the Crisis brought about by the pandemic, as well as how the Covid-19 pandemic redefined delivery of healthcare service and how patients and attendants or any other person concerned were able to pay in a hassle-free manner. It is noteworthy that healthcare providers and patients have understood the need for E-payments as the system offers a contactless payment system via phone apps and other electronic means to avoid physical contact.
Highlighting the role of E-ICU amid pandemic, he said, “We explored how E-ICUs can help, especially in tier-II and III cities that do not have so many doctors. We explored homecare set up, too.” His comment underscores the Covid-19 pandemic’s role in accelerating telemedicine and teleconsultation in general and the rapid evolution of the concept of the electronic intensive care unit or E-ICU in particular. E-ICU is a novel platform that enables storage of clinical profiles, all patient data investigations and treatments that can be remotely accessed and monitored too. It electronically connects patients in ICUs with their doctors, nurses, administrative staff and their kin.
Sehgal was speaking at the panel discussion on ‘Business Transformation of Healthcare Companies during Pandemic: Significant role of CIO’ attended by Kishor Gojiya, Associate Head, IT, CIMS Hospital Pvt Ltd, Care Institute of Medical Sciences; and CA Neeraj Jayaswal, CFO – India, Medicover Group; and J P Dwivedi, CIO, Rajiv Gandhi Cancer Institute & Research Centre. He has over 14 years of experience in Information Technology and was associated with reputed organisations such as the Indian Spinal Injuries Centre, Ganga Ram Hospital, Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital and Progressive Infotech.