Telemedicine in India is growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 20% and is expected to reach a value o $32 million by 2020. With more than 420 million mobile internet users, integrated medical records, the provision of mobile-enabled diagnostic software and an integrated, online healthcare delivery system can be fast-tracked. India’s healthcare providers are already working on new frontiers of digital technologies. Machine learning, blockchain and AI will continue to strengthen India’s ability to engage effectively with other geographies towards achieving global UHC targets.

Integrating healthcare for scale and global impact

For UHC to become a reality, it is important to expedite steps beyond infrastructural interventions to include water, sanitation, nutrition and a healthy lifestyle.

The challenge is to incentivize wellness-seeking behaviour. An encouraging aspect of India’s commitment to UHC has been the active and participatory role of the government. From Poshan Abhiyaan, which aims to eliminate the malaise of malnutrition, to the Prime Minister’s call for a Fit India Movement, new emphasis has been given to multi-stakeholder engagements.

For a sustainable UHC model, maintaining a balanced trade-off between cost, quality and access to healthcare services is critical. A collaborative approach aligning patients, payers and providers, along with innovative partnerships, will hasten efforts to mitigate risks, drive impact, forge stronger social returns and achieve sustainable UHC targets.