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HomeEducation Abroad‘Heal in India’ initiative by Mohfw

‘Heal in India’ initiative by Mohfw

A promising opportunity for Medical Fraternity

India is one of the world’s leading destinations for overseas patients seeking sophisticated treatment. As of now the medical value travel (MVT) size is USD 5-6 billion and an approximately 500000 foreign patients are treated in India per year. Considering the MVT value, Union Government has initiated ‘Heal In India’ campaign in order to increase the Medical Value Travel (MVT) size to 13 billion by 2026. To market India’s medical services and infrastructure abroad the Union Health Ministry plans to standardize processes and treatment packages for foreign citizens.

The Health Ministry is of the view that Telehealth has the potential to transform the Indian healthcare business and in turn promote the Medical Value Travel in India. As a follow-up health ministry has regularize the telehealth by legislating “Telemedicine practice guidelines of India, 2020”. Telemedicine has altered the conventional method of patient consultation with doctors. People with no geographic limitations may interact with healthcare providers, making it a convenient way to get medical treatment. During the Covid pandemic, telemedicine consultations increased from fewer than 1% of primary care visits to 43.5% in April 2020. The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare’s telemedicine division collaborated with CDAC (the Center for the Development of Advanced Computing) to establish the e-Sanjeevani OPD portal which is the world’s most complete public telemedicine system implementation.

In Medical value travel patients travel great distances for efficient and high-quality medical care. Thus, the application of Telehealth in the medical tourism industry promises to bridge distances to deliver a more personalized service post treatment in India. The time is appropriate for the healthcare professionals to understand the promising opportunity awaiting them in the future as the Health Ministry is likely to legislate and standardize the healthcare industry. Though in short term the healthcare industry will face issues related to compliance but in long run it will be a big boost for getting overseas patients and competing with other countries who are presently the leaders in medical tourism. It is appropriate time that the healthcare associations open up dialogue with the health ministry to fine tune “Heal in India”. The need of the hour is that “Heal in India” campaign should consider the ground realities in India while regularizing and standardizing processes. But one aspect can be assured that it will change the dynamics of the healthcare industry in India.

Dr. Bhushan Kedari