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'Technology Key To Providing Efficient Healthcare'

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The second edition of the BW Healthcare Summit held in New Delhi on June 5 was attended by leading healthcare industry players. Arvind Sivaramakrishnan, CIO of Apollo Hospitals, talks to Arshad Khan about IT systems in hospitals, standards of technology in Indian multi-speciality facilities and medical tourism:
How important is IT in the functioning of a tertiary care hospital?
Technology helps in increasing efficiency. It is a strong enabler to healthcare. We ensure that the clinical teams stay strong in their work and the other activities can be taken over by technology, making the best use of doctors. IT maintains continuity in communication which makes an organisation more effective and drive higher levels of safety. All this put together, clinical excellence goes up.
How do you compare Apollo's systems with international practices?
Apollo has received accreditation from JCI (Joint Commission International) our hospitals are International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) certified. Our technology is at par with any top global hospitals.
What kind of technology partners do you have?
We work with the best in the industry like Tata Consultancy Services and Microsoft. Wherever we feel the need to drive efficiency, we work with technological partners.
What are the other advantages of having a good IT system?
IT provides accessibility, quality and safety. IT is needed to provide high standards of healthcare. We are growing in the technology-enabled healthcare.
What are you expansion plans?
We are planning to move into tier-two and tier-three cities. We are growing everywhere with a mission to touch a billion lives.
What do medical tourists feel about technology deployment in Indian hospitals, especially at Apollo?
Apollo receives a lot of medical tourists from Malaysia, Middle-East, Africa and they are very much satisfied with our arrangements. Indian hospitals are at par with any top global hospital and this is what they feel, too. Economically it is beneficial from them to be treated in India compared to North America and European countries.