Covid-19 third wave hits India – The growing case for home healthcare

Home health care is a relatively new concept in India, but a survey by Godrej Interio cited industry sources as saying that the sector would grow at a CAGR of around 19% by 2025.

Through Sameer Joshi,

The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the inadequacy of the Indian health system in meeting the needs of a population of over a billion. With hospitals overcrowded and struggling to take in COVID-19 patients on their own, those in need of care for other illnesses had no choice but to be treated remotely at home.

While this was far from an ideal situation, it had a silver lining – it accelerated the growth of the home health care sector.

Before the pandemic, home care was limited to either geriatric patients or those with easily treatable diseases.

But the lack of hospital beds during the height of the pandemic, as well as the reluctance of patients themselves to visit hospitals for fear of contracting COVID-19, the government’s strict stay-at-home orders, and the boom in virtual technology and telemedicine, have all have taken the home health care sector to the next level and are able to offer more complex treatments from the comfort of their own home.

Home health care is a relatively new concept in India, but a survey by Godrej Interio cited industry sources as saying that the sector would grow at a CAGR of around 19% by 2025.

In addition to the pandemic, the survey found that increasing urbanization and nuclear families were the main drivers behind this expected growth. Just like the falling mortality rate and the increased life expectancy of the elderly, the proportion of senior citizens is expected to rise to 20% of the total population over the next 30 years.

This increased tendency for patients to seek increased home nursing care has forced the sector to develop skills that were previously lacking. There is still a skills gap, particularly in the form of a disorganized home care sector and a lack of qualified health workers. But telemedicine, made possible by wearables, video communications, artificial intelligence, and the Internet of Things, has clogged them to some extent and given the industry time to train its practitioners.

However, there are other challenges that must be addressed if the sector is to realize its potential as a truly full-fledged viable option for hospital care.

Above all, this includes the lack of infrastructure. Even when patients are recovering at home, they need adequate equipment to aid their recovery. But of course there is a lack of the basics in the household, such as care beds, feeding tables or mobility aids. Families often do not know where to get a real bed in the first place, and when they do, it is often not enough for the kind of care the patient needs.

But growth in home care has led medical devices and manufacturers to create devices specifically for home care, such as the Grace Homecare bed developed by Godrej Interio.

The Grace Homecare bed is designed to both meet a diverse range of medical needs and be aesthetically pleasing. It has an electronically adjustable back and leg support. It can be adjusted to minimize the risk of deep vein thrombosis (DVT), which is common in patients who are immobile for long periods of time.

It has a full-length side rail to prevent falls, rounded corners to prevent injury, and gaps in the frame to keep the patient from feeling trapped and claustrophobic. Ergonomically designed, it is 450 mm high with a mattress, which makes it easier to transfer the patient from the wheelchair to the bed.

It facilitates patient mobility and is easy to clean and allows for better personal hygiene. It also lowers treatment costs by shortening a patient’s hospital stays.

The home health care sector is still in its infancy in India. But products like the Grace Homecare Bed can give the industry a boost while also allowing the patient to relax in a stress-free environment at home.

(Author is Associate Vice President, Marketing (B2B), Godrej Interio. Article is for informational purposes only. Please consult medical experts and health care professionals before attempting any therapy, medication, and / or remedy. Views expressed are personal and reflective does not contradict the official position or policy of Financial Express Online.)

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