Thursday, November 17, 2005

Championing "patient education " in India

Though everyone agrees patient education is vitally important, it's still treated as a step-child in India. Doctors only pay lip-service to it, and pharmaceutical companies use it purely as a tool to increase their sales. This is such a shame !
An investment in patient education is one of the most cost-effective ways of improving healthcare in India. Well-informed patients will take much better care of themselves - and information therapy will help to make medical care much more patient-centric.
This is a major opportunity for health insurance companies who are just entering the Indian market. It's a market which is all set to explode, as the Indian economy is booming; and more Indians are now clamouring for health insurance, because of the increasing costs of medical care.
The company which champions patient education can "own" this segment in India - and this can be financially very profitable as well !
It is true that this is a challenging area , and there are still many problems.
1. There are many different regional languages
2. Many people are still illiterate
3. Few patient educational materials have been published in India so far

Actually, this represents a major opportunity !

Producing high quality educational materials in India is easy, given the wealth of medical talent we have; as well as a huge pool of talented English writers. They just need to be married together, to be able to work as a team !
Translating the materials into regional languages is relatively easy, once they have been produced.
Innovative formats such as animated graphics can be used intelligently, to reach out to illiterates and semi-literates.
All this material can be sold; and also given away for free through the internet, so it can reach out to anyone who wants to access it. This will mean that the distribution costs are virtually zero - it's only the production costs which will need to be incurred.

A national network of patient education resource centers can provide the "real-world" underpinning to patient education, by acting as a reference center; and training patient educators and doctors. Ideally, every hospital should have its own patient education library - and this could be as simple and basic as a librarian or nurse, armed with a computer connected to the internet, who can help to answer patients' queries.

We have all the resources and manpower we need - now all we need is the desire to do so !


  1. Anonymous1:02 PM

    I really do hope we can improve health care in India. The country has many which lack health insurance. I am glad to have blue cross of california as I hope they do offer it in India and help many recieve coverage.

  2. I am also an Entrapeuner who runa s a Healthcare IT company. We are into Multilingual Patients Education programs on Computers in different languages of the world and specailly India, and I see that we have got a tremedous response from both doctors and the patients. I also see that now the patients are able to understand the importance of the treatments prescribed and also the necessary steps to be taken to get early treatments, such as insurance.


Get A Free IVF Second Opinion

Dr Malpani would be happy to provide a second opinion on your problem.

Consult Now!