Indian Healthcare Industry - At the Cross-Roads

Somenath Nag, Director – ISV & Enterprise Solutions, ALTEN Calsoft Labs
Wednesday, August 6, 2014
Somenath Nag, Director – ISV & Enterprise Solutions, ALTEN Calsoft Labs
ALTEN Calsoft Labs is a 1992 founded technology consulting and engineering services company. Based out of California, the company offers software product development, cloud enablement and engineering services in verticals like telecom & networking, semiconductor and others.

The usage of IT solutions for healthcare industry in India is much lower compared to developed countries. Large private hospitals in India spend under 1 percent of their operating budget on IT, which is much lower than 3 percent spent in the west, this is even lower in case of Government hospitals. According to research firm Gartner Inc., Indian health care providers are expected to spend $1.08 billion on IT products and services in 2014, a moderate increase of 4 percent over 2013. Internal services, like salaries & benefits paid to the internal IT staffs, are projected to grow fastest at 18.5 percent in 2014. Fueled by the increasing demand in Clinical & Care Management applications, HIT software segment is projected to grow at a rate of 6 percent in 2014 to reach $101 million in 2014, up from $95 million in 2013.

The health care delivery environment in India has distinctive challenges. Currently, the Indian Healthcare sector faces the challenges of accessibility, infrastructure and quality.

Some other challenges faced by Indian CIOs in adopting IT into the Indian health care system include:
>> Lack of standards :- Health care service providers have to face several problems while designing and implementing health care management systems as there is not standard like HIPAA in India
>> Lack of in-house IT domain knowledge : - Most of the hospitals focus on care delivery and have low investment in IT
>> Reluctance of medical, nursing and other staff to adjust to change

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