With an aim to help deliver quality and affordable healthcare to people living in remote areas of India, Hewlett-Packard (HP) on Wednesday announced that the company will expand its cloud-enabled eHealth centres (eHC) in the country.
For this, the IT major partnered with Narayana Health (NH) to set up five more such health centres in Karnataka and West Bengal. The organisatons plan to take the total number of eHCs to over 20 in next 18-24 months. While HP brings in the technology, Narayana Health will implement, operate, run and manage newly established eHealth Centres for providing primary healthcare to patients, and address healthcare delivery and awareness challenges in Tier-2 and Tier-3 cities.
Stating eHCs as cost-effective and easily-deployable alternative to traditional healthcare solutions, HP Senior VP and MD for APJ (Printing and Personal Systems) Nick Lazaridis said the company is using technology and expertise to improve access to primary healthcare in underserved areas.
“Together with NH, HP will provide accessibility and affordability to patients across India,” he said.
The eHC initiative can help transform the existing primary healthcare centres (PHCs) and government-run systems that commonly lack the capacity and staff to provide high-quality care, he said during the Asia Pacific and Japan Summit 2014 here.
“Partnering with HP allows us to leverage technologies, such as telemedicine and cloud capabilities to deliver early detection and diagnosis to patients, while maintaining manageable costs,” said Dr Ashutosh Raghuvanshi, vice chairman, managing director and group chief executive officer, Narayana Health, which operates 26 hospitals in 16 Indian cities and a hospital at Grand Cayman.
EHealth Centres are rapidly deployable healthcare facilities, powered by HP’s cloud-enabled solution. These centres are fully equipped with key medical diagnostic equipment, in addition to open electronic medical record systems and are built to connect patients in remote areas, who couldn’t previously afford or access healthcare, to receive remote consultations and diagnoses from off-site physicians and specialists.
Housed in shipping containers or existing facilities, each eHealth Centre is customised and fully equipped with cloud-integrated diagnostic equipment, HP workstations and video conferencing. These technologies enable the collection, analysis and tracking of individual and community-wide data, such as disease patterns and risk factors, as well as regional-health profile monitoring to facilitate real-time surveillance of diseases in a specific area.
The healthcare solution was designed by HP Technology Services in India and developed in partnership with the Council of Scientific Research and Industrial Research (India) and other leading healthcare providers and NGOs. It leverages best-of-breed technologies, including open-source solutions.
The first eHealth Centre was established in 2012 in Chausala, India, (Kaithal district, Haryana), and recorded more than 4,000 patient visits in the first 100 days of operation. There are currently six eHealth Centres operating in India, which collectively have recorded more than 36,000 patient visits as of June 2014. The catchment area for existing ehealth Centers represents approximately 2 million people.
After successful implantation of the programme India, HP is now set to apply a similar approach to improve access to primary healthcare in Bhutan and Philippines.