Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Venkaiah Naidu has said, the Centre is establishing more number of telemedicine centres across rural India.
Delivering the silver jubilee convocation address at the Sri Ramachandra University, a deemed medical institution in Chennai, he said the telemedicine centres would be linked with pioneering medical institutions for the rural poor to get virtual consultation from reputed specialists.
He said a portal for online registration of patients has also been established for getting appointments from doctors, access medical and diagnostic reports and a host of other medical services. He said a national 24-by-7 medical helpline is on the cards.
Mr Venkaiah Naidu asked the doctors to distinguish themselves both by merit and also by empathising with patients. Pointing out the National Health Policy 2017 that stipulates establishing medical tribunals for speedy resolution of disputes, he said preventive medicine is being given due importance in the policy.
Minister Venkaiah Naidu observed that India has emerged as a major international medical tourism destination. He also drew satisfaction that there is gender parity in undergraduate medical education in India with 51 % of medical students being girls in India.
However, he observed that there is only one doctor for every 1700 people as against the WHO norm of having one for every 1000. He referred to the NITI Ayog study that has found, 187 more medical colleges are to be established in India to meet the growing needs.
He added, only 5 % of Indians have medical insurance cover, that needs to be enhanced. Minister Venkaiah Naidu asked those doctors who go abroad for higher education to come back to the motherland to serve. 365 medical graduates were awarded degrees during the convocation function.