Apoorv Sharma, co-founder and president, Venture Catalysts
Apoorv Sharma, co-founder and president, Venture Catalysts

Rural, urban poor have little to no access to quality healthcare: Apoorv Sharma

  • Healthcare in India offers great scope for entrepreneurs to innovate, disrupt and solve problems that affect a large segment of the population
  • Women and child hygiene, for instance, is a segment that deserves attention from entrepreneurs

Nearly 2.4 million people die every year due to poor quality of healthcare in India. The country’s rural and urban poor have little to no access to quality healthcare, and there is extreme inequality in terms of public and private healthcare frameworks. Healthcare in India offers great scope for entrepreneurs to innovate, disrupt and solve problems that affect a large segment of the population. Essentially, healthcare involves three phases—diagnosis, cure, and a post-operative period. Additionally, developing a framework for prevention of ailments, promoting healthy lifestyle habits, and improving the overall mental and physical well-being of the nation are areas where healthcare entrepreneurs should focus on.

Startups in the healthcare sector need to be clear about the problem they are aiming to solve. Medical equipment, med-tech, bio-tech, health insurance and automated medical test facilities, are some of the many high-potential segments.

Women and child hygiene, for instance, is a segment that deserves attention from entrepreneurs. With basic hygiene facilities out of reach for more than half of the population, innovative and cost-effective ideas are immediately needed to protect women and children from diseases borne out of unhygienic conditions. Startups can develop easy-to-carry hygiene devices, disinfection and at-home vaccination kits, provide app-based training for pre- and post-natal child care, among other ways to ensure health of the women and children is not compromised with easily.

Additionally, new age solutions such as chatbots and virtual assistance devices can be used to assist in monitoring well-being of patients. They have proven to be a useful tool to care for elderly citizens and the specially-abled. Remote inspection devices can also aid in accelerating forensic investigations, which is a completely new segment.

Reverse Pitch is like a normal investors pitch, but with the roles reversed. That means the startup doesn’t present its business to investors, but investors and companies pitch their business concepts, challenges and the like to startups.


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