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Digital Health Technology can revolutionise healthcare in India: Report

  • Around 76% of healthcare professionals in the country already use digital health records in their practice: Future Health Index 2019
  • India meets the 15-country average when it comes to the usage of artificial intelligence within healthcare at 46%

New Delhi: India is leading in the adoption of digital health technology with 76% of healthcare professionals in the country already using digital health records (DHRs) in their practice, according to a 15-country Future Health Index (FHI) 2019 report by Royal Philips, a global leader in health technology.

Interestingly, India meets the 15-country average when it comes to the usage of artificial intelligence (AI) within healthcare at 46%.

Commenting on the launch, Rohit Sathe, President – Philips Healthcare, Indian Subcontinent said, "Philips’ Future Health Index 2019 report confirms that digital health technology is a pivotal pillar in delivering value-based care across the healthcare continuum in India. Tools including telehealth and adaptive intelligence solutions can help lower the barriers between hospitals and patients, thereby improving access to care and enhancing overall patient satisfaction, particularity in tier II & III cities in India. We hope that the insights from this report will assist key stakeholders in designing and implementing robust and sustainable health systems in the country."

According to the findings, 80% of healthcare professionals in India have shared patient information with other professionals inside their health facility, which is equal to the number of healthcare professionals who share patient information electronically across the 15-country average

Individuals in India are likely not worried that AI will substitute the human aspects of their healthcare experience, as only one in five (19%) associate AI with less human interaction compared to one-in-three (31%) individuals living within the 15-country average.

The study found that when Indian healthcare professionals are supported by digital technology, their experience improves. For instance, a majority of Indian healthcare professionals who use DHRs in their practice report that DHRs have a positive impact on quality of care (90%), healthcare professional satisfaction (89%), and patient outcomes (70%) when compared to the 15-country average of 69%, 64% and 59% respectively. 64% of Indian healthcare professionals agree that patients having access to their own health data (including test results, prescriptions, scans etc.) has positively impacted their patients’ experience.

The report also found that about two-thirds (67%) of Indians feel comfortable or neutral about seeking medical advice from their doctor through a health application on their phone, suggesting a high willingness and openness to further adopt telehealth and unlock its benefits.

About half (49%) of Indians say they know nothing at all about the benefits of digital health technology or mobile health apps in healthcare. Providing education and information around the benefits of these technologies will be key in taking Indians along this technological healthcare journey.

The report reflects independent research, commissioned by Philips in 15 countries, in which India was included.

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