Indian healthcare providers to spend $1.1 bn on IT in 2014

Healthcare providers in India are expected to spend $1.1 billion on IT products and services in 2014, a 5-per cent rise over 2013, according to a study by global research and advisory firm Gartner Inc.

IT services, which includes consulting, implementation, IT outsourcing and business process outsourcing, will be the largest overall spending category throughout the forecast period within the healthcare providers sector.

It is expected to reach $300 million in 2014, up from $280 million in 2013, with the consulting segment growing 10 per cent, Gartner said in its study.

This forecast includes spending by healthcare providers (includes hospitals and hospital systems, ambulatory service and physicians' practices) on internal services, software, IT services, data center, devices and telecom services.

''India has a new government, and the ministry of health will closely examine ways to deliver cost effective healthcare across the country. Delivering wide access to healthcare in an affordable manner will be a top priority for the wider public healthcare system,'' said Anurag Gupta, research director at Gartner.

''The organised private healthcare sector will continue its expansion across Tier II and Tier III cities, as well as niche sectors like maternity and child health. We expect emphasis on eHealth, mobile health, telemedicine, public private partnership and leveraging innovative delivery models,'' he added.

Internal Services will achieve the highest growth rate amongst the spending categories – forecast to be 18 per cent in 2014. Internal services refer to salaries and benefits paid to the information services staff of an organisation. The information services staff includes all company employees that plan, develop, implement and maintain information systems.

Software will achieve a growth rate of 8.4 per cent in 2014 to reach $98 million in 2014, up from $90 million in 2013, led by growth in vertical specific software (software applications that are unique to a vertical industry. These are standalone applications that are not modules or extensions of horizontal applications).