Wockhardt Hospitals Telemedecine Initiatives

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Patients in rural India are finally being able to get expert advice from a specialist in a metro or even from a doctor from India's top corporate Hospitals like Wockhardt Hospitals without having to move out of their environs which was unthinkable in the past,but is a growing reality today.

The healthcare industry seems to be venturing into telemedicine in a big way with hospital groups trying to `virtually' expand their reach.

Telemedecine has provided Healthcare Companies the opportunity to have the tie-ups by creating linkages among smaller hospitals and larger super-speciality healthcare centers within the group, connecting with hospitals overseas as well as educational institutions.

Telemedicine may be as simple as two health professionals discussing a case over the telephone, or as complex as using satellite technology and video-conferencing equipment to conduct a real-time consultation between medical specialists in two different countries.

Wockhardt Hospitals have already put in place 2 tele-medicine centres - one in Chitradurga in Karnataka and the second one at Erode in Tamil Nadu. Both these centres are catering to rural / semi urban patients and are linked to the state of the art tertiary care hospital at our Hospital at Bannerghatta Road in Bangalore. Through this network, patients are in a position to utilize the services of specialist doctors at the Wockhardt Hospitals which in the normal course would not have been accessible to them on account of both affordability and distance. Tele consultations are provided free of cost to all patients.

A third centre is expected to be commissioned by July 2009 in the Coorg district of Karnataka - which again is an area that is severely under served in terms of healthcare facilities. Over the next one year, the Company expects to put in place tele medicine centres in the Konkan areas of Maharashtra as well as in some North Eastern States.


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