HP announces expansion of cloud-enabled eHealth centres

Hewlett-Packard has announced the expansion of its cloud-enabled eHealth centres (eHC) in India, aimed at helping deliver quality and affordable healthcare to people living in remote areas in the country.

The IT major has now teamed up with Narayana Health (NH) to set up another five eHealth centres in Karnataka and West Bengal.

HP plans to set up over 20 eHCs in the next 18-24 months.

While the technology would be brought by HP, Narayana Health would implement, operate, run and manage newly established eHealth Centres for providing primary healthcare to patients, and to address healthcare delivery and awareness challenges in Tier-2 and Tier-3 cities.

Emphasising that eHCs were cost-effective and easily-deployable alternatives to traditional healthcare solutions, HP senior VP and MD for APJ (printing and personal systems) Nick Lazaridis said the company was using technology and expertise to improve access to primary healthcare in underserved areas, The Financial Express reported.

He said together with NH, HP would provide accessibility and affordability to patients across India.

The eHC initiative would be able to transform the existing primary healthcare centres (PHCs) and government-run systems that commonly lack the capacity and staff to provide high-quality care, he said during the Asia Pacific and Japan Summit 2014 in Mumbai.

The centres, built in shipping containers, are placed conveniently in rural areas in states such as UP, where thousands of people get medical aid.

The easy to transport containers are equipped to deliver quality and affordable healthcare services to people living in areas, where finding the right kind of health care remains a distant dream. Given the success of the project HP is now looking to expand the initiative, Business Insider reported.

These makeshift eHealth containers are built to connect patients in remote areas to receive healthcare from the best doctors in the country, with each container fully equipped with cloud-integrated diagnostics equipment, HP workstations and video conferencing material.

Seven out of 10 Indians live in rural areas where only three out of 10 doctors are available, the rest are in the urban subdivisions.

On an average, getting medical advice from a qualified health practitioner for Indians in rural areas involves walking up to 8 KM. The eHealth containers have proved to be a boon for the people  in the areas, and with their expansion people living in villages can look forward to receiving the best of medical help swiftly.