IT TACK­LES HEALTH­CARE RE­FORM

China Daily (Canada) - - IN DEPTH -

In ad­di­tion to the cen­tral gov­ern­ment and do­mes­tic and over­seas in­vestors, the push to re­form China’s med­i­cal sys­tem is com­ing from the coun­try’s in­for­ma­tion tech­nol­ogy com­pa­nies.

Pri­vate in­vestors and cor­po­ra­tions are putting money into de­vel­op­ing the IT health­care sec­tor, with in­vest­ment pre­dicted to dou­ble to $5.6 bil­lion by 2017, ac­cord­ing to an­a­lyt­ics firm In­ter­na­tional Data Corp (IDC). In­ter­na­tional com­pa­nies get­ting into the mar­ket in­clude IBM Corp, Mi­crosoft Corp, BT Group and Siemens AG. In China, China Mo­bile, Huawei Tech­nol­ogy Co Ltd and ZTE Corp are among com­pa­nies com­pet­ing, as well as on­line sites.

Ali­pay, the e-pay­ment sys­tem launched by Alibaba Group Ltd, be­gan a project in July that al­lows pa­tients to book ap­point­ments at se­lect hos­pi­tals through a smart­phone app.

Ten­cent’s WeChat launched a com­pet­ing mo­bile app, Smart Hos­pi­tal, for book­ing ap­point­ments at par­tic­i­pat­ing hos­pi­tals in the south­ern city of Guangzhou.

Alibaba is also test­ing a mo­bile app for cus­tomers to fill pre­scrip­tions and find dis­counts on med­i­ca­tions. Us­ing their phone’s cam­era, cus­tomers would send pho­tos of pre­scrip­tions to be filled to nearby phar­ma­cies to check avail­abil­ity and prices.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from China

© PressReader. All rights reserved.