Technology Must Be Used For Better Urban Infrastructure, Say Experts

The panel discussed how technology can be deployed to solve the various challenges in the healthcare and education sector in India

Industry experts got together at the BW Businessworld Urban Infrastructure Conclave 2017 held in Bengaluru on February 9 to discuss how technology can be leveraged to improve accessibility, affordability, and the quality of healthcare and education in India.

The panel moderated by Somick Kumar Goswami, Executive Director-Consulting, PwC was joined by panellists Dr. B.S. Ajaikumar, chairman, HCG; Chenraj Jain, chairman, Jain group of institutions; S. Vaitheeswaran, MD & CEO, Manipal Global Education; and Dr. Ashutosh Raghuvanshi, vice chairman, MD & group CEO, Narayana Health.

Dr Raghuvanshi of Narayana Health talked about how they are working with a technology company to automatically detect pattern of diseases. He added that the future lies in sensors that would do remote monitoring from a centralised system and use AI to detect an emergency. "Elderly care has been a neglected issue primarily because India is a young country."

Jain of Jain group of institutions shared his views on the importance of centralised research centres where sharing of resources is done. "This is how technology can be used in the education sector," he said.

Addressing the debate on online courses replacing physical classrooms, Vaitheeswaran of Manipal Global Education said, "We must look at learning in a digital way. People will increasingly want to learn at their own pace and time…content is not the differentiator but the mode of learning…and the distinction between physical classroom and online classroom will blur and will eventually become one composite way of imparting education."

Ajaikumar of HCG pointed out that healthcare has leapfrogged in India where quality healthcare is available at the most affordable price.

He added that with technologies such as telemedicine, today patients do not need to travel out of their home town for better treatment.
"We need to develop a system where the patients can be imparted care at their hometown and all technology support is provided"

He said that HCG is using robots in many surgeries but robots cannot take overtake human. One of the major advantages of robotic surgery is precision medicine, which refers to treatment without harming the normal organs and tissues.