GE, Philips India focus on managed healthcare services

manage25th November 2009 : Bangalore- The healthcare system in India is going the tech sector way by adopting models akin to managed IT services with pay-per-use customer engagements.

Under managed healthcare services, hospitals and diagnostic centres do not have to invest in hardware and costly equipment or service the equipment they already own. The adoption of pay-per-use has triggered a sudden rush to cash in on the low-cost and scalable delivery model, prompting many hospital players to revisit their IT spends.

Bhavdeep-Singh“It’s a good proposition. Hospital players will find partners, and vendors will have access to newer markets. We are looking to tap into managed healthcare services for medical equipment, Bhavdeep Singh, CEO of hospital chain Fortis Healthcare, told DNA.

With pay-per-use gaining currency, electronic medical equipment giants — GE and Philips — are increasing the focus on managed healthcare by offering on-demand services.

“Leading equipment manufacturers are increasingly looking to supply diagnostic equipment to hospitals on a pay-per-use basis. High-end diagnostic equipment collectively account for around 25-35% of entire project cost of hospitals. Hence, outsourcing of diagnostic services relieves the financing burden of equipment purchase with manufacturers assuming the demand and financing risk,” Pradip Kanakia, national head of markets, KPMG India, said.

GE Healthcare, the medical technologies and services major, has forayed into the managed services which are at a nascent stage in India, by creating a teleradiology interface for the new internet-based Picture archival and Communication System (PACS) called Centricity PACS-IW solution.

GE recently tied up with the Diwan Chand Aggarwal Clinics, a New-Delhi based radiology group, to run the pilot project to test the web-based interface.

“Healthcare IT is under penetrated. We have introduced this service solution modelled on the lines of SaaS (software-as-a-service). We are also looking to expand the service to ultrasound products, electronic medical records, health information exchange to support the healthcare needs in the country,” V Raja, president and CEO, South Asia, GE Healthcare, said.Dutch firm Philips Electronics is exploring an array of products and services in the healthcare segment.

“Apart from operating in the segments where it is already strong, Philips is also exploring adjacent spaces and businesses from solutions beyond the product, Murali Sivaraman,MD & CEO, Philips Electronics India, told DNA Money recently.

As part of this strategy, the company is also implementing pay-per-use solutions and financing options for enterprise customers. “The global strategy is to invest in services to increase revenues across segments,” he said.