Indian hospital shows how mobility can improve healthcare in rural areas
Monday, November 10, 2014
India is grappling with a huge rural-urban divide in terms of healthcare infrastructure. The grave situation of healthcare in rural areas of the country can be assessed by looking at the findings of a report by Deloitte, which states that 60% of hospitals in India are situated in urban areas whereas about 80% of its population lives in rural areas, which have minimal healthcare facility. Another recent study conducted by the Indian Institute of Public Opinion found that 89% of rural Indian patients have to travel about 8 kms to access basic medical treatment, and the rest have to travel even farther.
These grim facts were the main motivators that prompted Balabhai Nanavati Hospital (BNH) to turn to technology to bring quality healthcare to rural population. Thus, in association with UST Global, it launched a telemedicine application for mobile devices to eliminate distance barriers and to improve access to medical specialists in distant rural communities. The telemedicine application is a BlackBerry 10-based mobile application that uses advanced telecommunications and information technologies to enable access to advanced healthcare consultation from qualified healthcare providers for the people in rural areas.