FUTURE OF INDIAN HEALTHCARE
hubs across the country and has roped in Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) to provide satellite links to connect the telemedicine centres to hospitals in Delhi, Chandigarh, Srinagar and Puducherry. The ministry is taking services of ISRO in hilly areas where there is poor cellphone coverage.
The Health Ministry has been making use of information and communications technology (ICT) to achieve universal healthcare outreach of services and striving towards reaching the goal of virtual healthcare for all. The primary focus of such initiatives is to provide healthcare accessibility in distant, inaccessible areas, rural communities and pilgrimage centres to meet the health needs of population.
Considering the shortage of doctors in remote inaccessible and rural areas of the country, the ministry has been taking steps to reach the unreached areas via utilisation of telemedicine platform through satellite communication in collaboration with Department of Space for providing citizen-centric tele-healthcare services by setting up telemedicine nodes at various geographical locations, including Chardhams and other important pilgrimage centres like Amarnath, Ayappa and Kedarnath.
The telemedicine facility was also started during Simhasth Kumbh Mela in Ujjain. Though it was for the time that such facility was started during a Kumbh Mela, where devotees visit in lakhs each day, the telemedicine service was a great hit. The project was implemented by the National Resource Centre, SGPGI, Lucknow in collaboration with Development Education Communication Unit (DECU), Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), Ahmadabad. The teleconsultation services was being provided from AIIMS, Bhopal and SGPGI, Lucknow doctors from 9.30 am to 6.00 p.m. Thousands of devotees took the benefit of it, which was operational from April 22, 2016.
All established telemedicine centres consist of a very small aperture terminal (VSAT)
The Union Minister for Health & Family Welfare, Shri J.P. Nadda inaugurating the new health facilities to improve quality of healthcare services, at PGIMER, Chandigarh