New Delhi, 27 October 2023: The FICCI (Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry) on the opening day of its 17th annual healthcare conference — FICCI HEAL 2023 — delved into the strategies and opportunities that can drive the growth of the healthcare industry in the years to come. Supported by the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (MoHFW) and NITI Aayog, Government of India, the two-day conference was inaugurated with an address by Prof. S P Singh Baghel, Hon’ble Union Minister of State for Health & Family Welfare, (GoI).
Centred around the theme, ‘Healthcare METAmorphosis’, the event commenced at the FICCI Federation House, New Delhi, with a plenary session on ‘Roadmap for Making Cancer Care Affordable and Accessible in India’. It served as the platform for the panellists to share their insights to create a roadmap for making cancer care more affordable, accessible and improve the outcomes for cancer patients across the country.
Chairing the session, Ms. Indrani Kaushal, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (GoI) said, “Cancer care, being a public good, pure market mechanisms cannot be merely adequate to deliver such a public good. How to fund cancer care for the most vulnerable populations is what we expect today’s deliberation to give us some headway.”
She stressed on the need to involve all the stakeholders to deliver the “public good” and not only look towards the government to make it available in the desired quantity.
Describing cancer as a “pandemic”, Mr Vineet Gupta, Co-Lead, FICCI Task Force Cancer Care and Head – Government Affairs, Siemens Healthineers asserted that technology can play a crucial role in providing comprehensive cancer care throughout the country by networking and improving the infrastructure and resource models, such as Hubble, to ensure optimal utilization of available services.
Moderator of the Session, Ms Srimayee Chakraborty, Partner, Healthcare Services, EY Parthenon, shared “the escalating cancer crisis in India is evident with nearly 2 million cases diagnosed annually and 9% expected growth in new cases over the coming years.
The second session of the day focused on “New Age Healthcare Delivery Models” and how they are reshaping the healthcare landscape in India. Moderating the session, Mr Lalit Mistry, Partner and Co-Head, Healthcare Sector, KPMG, India emphasised the ongoing ‘Healthcare METAmorphosis’ in India and stated that it will help to change the healthcare landscape in India.
Sharing his vision, Dr Mahesh Joshi, Co-Chair, FICCI Health Services Committee and President & CEO, Apollo Homecare stressed the need for evolution in the home healthcare system. He said that soon the insurance companies are expected to work closely with home healthcare companies to deliver the highest quality of care to patients.
‘Fostering Resilient Economics’ became the main topic of discussion during the third session, which began after lunch. Addressing the gathering, Dr Sanjeev Singh, Co-Chair, FICCI Health Services Committee; Medical Director, Amrita Institute- Faridabad and Chief Medical Superintendent, AIMSRC Kochi stated that several innovative payment plans are in the pipeline to make the Indian healthcare system cost-effective. He added that they are meeting young, dynamic engineers and financial analysts who are working in healthcare to come up with innovative ideas in the sector.
Speaking on the issue of financing and viability in public health, Dr K Madan Gopal, Advisor- Public Health Administration, National Health Systems Resource Centre (NHSRC), MoHFW, GoI said, “Revenue is one of the constraints and one of the important factors that limit activities”. He further expressed that we need to prioritise the utilization of resources, whether considering the return on investment in private sector or in government programs, so that they becomes cost-effective for the general public.
Mr Gautam Khanna, CEO of PD Hinduja Hospital and MRC, Mumbai, speaking on demystifying balance sheets in a hospital, emphasised the need to focus on day-to-day activities in the organization to maintain good financial health.
The FICCI HEAL 2023’s inaugural day came to a close with a fireside chat dedicated to ‘Spurring Investment in Healthcare.’ Deliberating on the issue, Dr Nandakumar Jairam, Chairman- Medica Synergie Hospitals; Advisor- Sheares Health care India; Chairman- Shyamrad; Former Chairman-NABH underlined the importance of thoroughly analysing the quality of the healthcare delivery, clinical outcomes, accountability and the cost of quality, instead of just looking at the bottom of the balance sheet.