India urgently needs future-ready digital health system, says Ficci

There is a need to bring innovation in the digital health platform with the use of technology to provide best services to the citizens, MoS Health and Family Welfare Ashwini Kumar Choubey said

India needs a future-ready digital health system and it has become even more urgent in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, a whitepaper released by industry body Ficci said on Thursday.

E-Pharmacy provides a building block for such a digital health ecosystem to ensure efficient and affordable universal health coverage, it added.

"The need for a future-ready digital health system has become even more urgent with the Covid-19 pandemic. A strong health system must have a strong and resilient digital backbone," the whitepaper said.

Speaking on the occasion, Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Ashwini Kumar Choubey said: "The pharmacy services through e-commerce have been notified by the Home Ministry as essential services during Covid-19. The e-pharmacy model can work effectively with the government's common service centres (CSC) aimed at improving access to essential healthcare facilities in rural India."

Addressing the webinar on the release of FICCI Whitepaper, 'e-Pharmacies at Covid-19 Frontline: Fighting the Odds. Serving the Nation', Choubey said technology played a crucial role during the pandemic and ensured the supply of essential items including medicines.

"The overall essence of these circumstances is that the importance of technology and digital infrastructure to deliver affordable and quality medicines and health services to consumers across the country has clearly emerged," he added.

There is a need to bring innovation in the digital health platform with the use of technology to provide best services to the citizens, Choubey said.

Ficci e-pharmacy working group & co-founder 1mg Prashant Tandon said the nascent e-pharmacy sector in India was fortunate to be in a position to serve the citizens during the time of lockdown, ensuring access to medicines across the nation.

"We look forward to working with the government and having clear and enabling guidelines to move this sector forward and unleash a wave of innovation across the healthcare delivery ecosystem," he added.

In a similar vein, Ficci secretary General Dilip Chenoy said there isan urgent need to nurture this promising sector with the right set of policy frameworks and guidelines in order to provide the benefits that the sector fosters for the consumers.


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