Additionally, the conference unveiled DHN & CHIME India Annual Survey results, uncovering digital health trends and outlook for 2024.
India’s first dedicated digital health news platform, Digital Health News hosted a well thought-out industry conference in the heart of silicon valley of India. The one-day event, DHN Forum Bengaluru showcased quality discussion and deliberation with participation from eminent healthcare leaders from India and the US.
The conference deliberation was focused on three subjects: consumer-driven health, unlocking healthcare data and bridging the digital divide.
Consequently, panel discussions and sessions were conducted where healthcare luminaries including Arvind Sivaramakrishnan, CIO, Karkinos Healthcare; Vishnu Saxena, founder & CEO, Digital Health News (DHN) & ScaleHealthTech, Kumar KV, CIO, Narayana Health, Ashokkan Somuveerappan, CIO, Apollo Hospitals, Feby Abraham, EVP, chief strategy & innovations officer, Neal Patel, CIO, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN, among other distinguished health experts delivered engaging discussions.
The Forum commenced with the opening remark of Vishnu Saxena, founder & CEO of DHN, where he shared the inspiration behind launching DHN and DHN Forum - which entails a series of conferences in the form of DHN Forum Bengaluru, DHN Forum Mumbai, DHN Forum Kolkata etc.
These forums aim to provide an intimate setting for top hospital CEOs, CIOs, and key industry partners to share exclusive insights shaping the present and future of Digital Healthcare in India.
At the event, D Randeep IAS, commissioner, Health & Family Welfare Services, Government of Karnataka, unveiled the Karnataka government's plans to launch a cutting-edge microsite designed to welcome private players to the Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission (ABDM).
Further, he underscored ABDM's success in establishing a digital ecosystem within government hospitals, paving the way for a healthier and more connected future.
Subsequently, a fireside chat session included prominent industry figures, including Feby Abraham, Arvind Sivaramakrishnan, Ashokkan Somuveerappan, and Kumar KV, CIO, Narayana Health.
The discussion revolved around the state of digital health transformation in India & US leaders' perspective. During the session, DHN founder & CEO Vishnu Saxena noted how digital is making significant strides in India in an informed and intelligent manner.
"The inner India has to transform on digital. That's where the real transformation will happen. Innovation without adoption is not a transformation. So for transformation to happen, we need to adopt the technology across India and that to happen is, to empower and strengthen the regional ecosystem for a countrywide transformation," the DHN founder & CEO added.
The initial session of the conference delved into digital health transformation strategies, acknowledging the pandemic's significant role in accelerating and achieving these objectives.
Further, the speakers highlighted the opportunities within the digital transformation of clinical care, underlining the importance of data safeguarding in compliance with new regulations and emphasising the need for continuous evolution.
Talking about the future of healthcare and its upcoming trends, Dr Ganapathy Krishnan, director, Apollo, Telemedicine Networking Foundation and Apollo TeleHealth Services, pinpointed how technology has emerged as a game-changer.
Challenging the traditional role of hospitals, Dr Krishnan talked about a significant transformation in the role of hospitals by 2030. According to him, hospitals will shift from patient-centric models to specialised centres primarily focused on surgeries and procedures. “Believe that the hospital of 2030 will be for procedures alone. Everything is being shifted,’’ he noted.
Further, speakers including Arvind spotlighted the challenges in India’s digital healthcare transformation. According to him, cost is a major hurdle in the path of digital transformation in India. As some of the electronic digital equipment comes from outside India, there is a push for digital equipment to be manufactured within the country.
The Karkinos’ CIO further emphasised that the struggle lies in establishing a standard operating process (SOP) due to the extensive scale, diverse geography, and economic variations within the country.
‘’We are now at a stage where we are struggling to get the SOP right for digital transformation in India,’’ he added.
While Febby, sharing perspective from the US’s healthcare, noted that equitable access is something that he would like to take away from Indian healthcare. He said, ‘’Equitable access is a big issue. US healthcare functions effectively for individuals with insurance but poses significant challenges for those without insurance or residing in rural areas.’’
Emphasing the potential to invest in upfront treatments, Febby acknowledged that he wished to incorporate this aspect of Indian healthcare into the US system, dedicating time and resources, ultimately saving costs on complex care.
In a subsequent session, speakers such as Geetha Manunath, founder & CEO, Niramai Health Analytix, Praveen Bist, CIO, Amrita Hospital, Faridabad, and Shuvankar Parmanik, Dy CIO Manipal Health, highlighted the ubiquitous application of AI, noting that AI can be employed even where the patient is not a prospect to the hospital.
Moving ahead, the third panel addressed consumer-driven health enablement through transformative initiatives such as the digital front door. This initiative aims to enhance patient access, engagement, and overall experience, ultimately enhancing patient experience and thereby acquiring patient loyalty.
During the event, Romanus Prabhu, director, product support, ManageEngine, Zoho, highlighted that cybersecurity leaders and decision-makers often turn to industry demographics reports to assess trends in their specific sectors.
He addressed that in the year 2023, breaches of confidential information most frequently impacted organisations in the healthcare, financial services, pharmaceutical, and energy sectors.
In addressing the overall cybersecurity landscape, he mentioned, "Last year there were 8 million data breaches." Despite technological advancements, Prabhu underscored the importance of fundamental network management, stating, "Though we have a lot of advancement in terms of tech, research, and putting that in practice. But if you don’t follow the essential fundamentals of managing your network, your business endpoints, your infrastructure, then it's going to be a real challenge."
Additionally, the event unveiled DHN & CHiME India Annual Survey. The survey results uncovered digital health trends and outlook for 2024. The insights encompassed India's digital health trends, industry direction, and investment priorities, compiled through surveys conducted across the country's top hospitals and stakeholders.
Girish Kulkarni, chairperson, CHiME India Chapter, and DHN’s founder & CEO Vishnu Saxena unveiled the report booklet. Besides, the spokespersons shared some significant nuggets from the survey findings.
Sharing insights from the survey findings, Saxena said, although Indian hospital CIOs are well aware of their priorities, however, there is a lack of dedicated focus in addressing some key issues including digital systems such as EHR, Cyber Security among others.
He said, "This indicates that CIOs representing hospitals in India have other priorities to address. As of 2024, the digital transformation of their health system isn't their primary focus."
In another keynote session, DHN Forum Bengaluru had Dr Nandkumar Jairam, chairman, Medica Synergie Hospitals, advisor, Sheares Healthcare India, chairman, SHAYAMRAD, who shared insights on the tool to transform healthcare.
He remarked, ‘’Technology is the most important tool available today. Technology has and will continue to transform healthcare in every aspect of its existence. It is a comprehensive, complete transformation that will result in efficiencies that will enable us to deliver care in a better way, in a more efficient manner and achieve cost reductions.’’
However, in his speech, he also recognised the growing relevance of AI in the healthcare space. According to him, AI will disrupt the way technology is applied in healthcare. ‘’The efficiency it creates is enormous and it transcends what we have done so far. Clinical services and technology should work together. They cannot be misaligned.”
Next in the series of DHN Forum is DHN Forum Mumbai, slated to be held in the last week of May 2024.
The College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME) is an executive organization dedicated to serving senior digital health leaders. CHIME includes more than 5,000 members in 56 countries and two US territories and partners with over 150 healthcare IT businesses and professional services firms. CHIME enables its members and business partners to collaborate, exchange ideas, develop professionally and advocate the effective use of information management to improve the health and care throughout the communities they serve. CHIME's members are chief information officers (CIOs), chief medical information officers (CMIOs), chief nursing information officers (CNIOs), chief innovation officers (CIOs), chief digital officers (CDOs), and other senior healthcare leaders. The CHIME India Chapter became the first international chapter outside North America in 2016 and is now a community of over 70+ members in India. For more information, please visit www.chimecentral.org