Highlighting various revolutionary changes that implementation of an open healthcare ecosystem will bring in the Indian healthcare sector, as suggested by a joint BCG-FICCI report.
Covid-19 has highlighted the drawbacks of all existing systems across sectors and healthcare is no different. The pandemic has underlined the need to strengthen India’s healthcare system and make it more accessible to the masses. Covid-19 has also increased the acceptability and demand for digital healthcare solutions as a practical alternative to traditional treatment models.
Source: BCG-FICCI report
Preparing the ground for digital healthcare
Lockdown limitations imposed due to the pandemic, made digital healthcare a necessity. To respond to this need, Indian government launched National Digital Health Mission (NDHM) in August 2020, with the aim to create an “open digital health ecosystem or health ODE”. This will provide a shared digital infrastructure to be leveraged by private and public enterprises in order to build and offer innovative healthcare solutions.
Health ODE is a landmark initiative with fundamental building blocks like “standardized health registries, a unique patient ID, federated health records, interoperability and automatic claim settlement engines”.
In the recent past similar reforms accelerated the fintech sector and the same is expected from ODE in the healthcare sector. Health ODE is expected to make digital a key element of the operating models for all healthcare players driving revolutionary transformations in the sector.
Understanding how health ODE will drive healthcare transformation
- ODE will create information transparency by providing one single source of truth for obtaining or verifying information on any doctor or healthcare facility, increasing trust and credibility.
- Interoperability of health data systems will enable patients to share their health records digitally across service providers, making possible hassle free “coordinated care”.
- There will be a standardization of claims processing, enabling faster and cheaper claim settlements.
- Digitization of prescriptions will simplify payment processes, ease claim filing and record maintenance.
- All these will enable development of patient-centric innovations.
If these visions are implemented adequately, health outcome will improve, and sector productivity will rise. Over the course of next 10 years, this can add an incremental economic value of USD 200-250 billion to India’s GDP.