GE Healthcare will invest $300 million (Rs 1,996 crore) over five years to deliver affordable healthcare solutions across India, other South Asian countries and Africa.
A subsidiary of US-based conglomerate General Electric, GE Healthcare delivers healthcare equipment and technology services that are aimed at reducing cost of care using digital technologies. The firm has also partnered with 11 organisations to provide technical skills to medical industry professionals. While it has trained nearly 6,500 people through skill enhancement programmes, GE Healthcare aims to train another 10,000 people annually to extend better healthcare solutions across smaller cities and towns.
“We will invest nearly $300 million across India and South Asian countries to extend our cost-effective healthcare solutions. For example, we are working on a cost-effective imaging facility (CT scan) which will reduce the cost for CT scan by 40 per cent. We are also working on an affordable incubation facility for premature babies to reduce the infant mortality rate,” said Terri Bresenham, president & CEO, Sustainable Healthcare Solutions, GE Healthcare.
The company is primarily focusing on providing affordable care through digitisation of diagnostic information. Such equipment and technologies will be designed and manufactured in India.
“What will be coming up later this year is a cost-effective incubation facility designed and manufactured here in Bangalore. Beyond cost-effectiveness, our equipment are also designed to take care of empathy of the patients,” added Bresenham.
She believes India’s model can potentially revolutionise healthcare delivery in the rest of the world with low-cost and quality care.
GE Healthcare also aims to create a pool of quality medical professionals to extend better care beyond urban areas. The company is co-creating programmes and solutions with Healthcare Sector Skill Council and medical institutions. “Skill development side is something that we also feel very strongly about… There is a clear shortage of doctors, nurses and other allied professionals. The benefit in India is the cost of healthcare. We think delivering healthcare to remote places is possible through co-innovation.”
The company, which has redesigned a radiology course with a mix of classroom training and internship to make people economically stable, will work on training the aspiring medical professionals with soft skills.