As India continues to face challenges in providing healthcare to its vast population, the Healthcare Changemakers Conclave-2023 recently gathered to celebrate and recognize the significant contributions of healthcare professionals and organizations. The unique Doctor Couple Changemakers Awards were introduced as a first-of-its-kind initiative to acknowledge the sacrifices and dedication of doctor couples working together to improve healthcare in the country.
At the award ceremony, Chief Guest Smt. Meenakshi Lekhi, MoS, External Affairs and Culture of India, emphasized the importance of such events in bringing changemakers together and appreciating their efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic. She highlighted the Indian government’s commitment to improving healthcare accessibility through initiatives such as Ayushman Bharat and increasing the number of AIIMS and viral testing labs across the country.
Former Secretary for Health Environment, Forests, and Climate Change, Shri C K Mishra, who attended the event as a Guest of Honour, emphasized the need for continuous efforts to improve healthcare accessibility, affordability, quality, and equity for India’s citizens. He believes that celebrating the work of changemakers is crucial for motivating others to contribute positively to the healthcare sector.
Dr. Upasana Arora, MD of Yashoda Super Speciality Hospitals, called for a shift in attitudes and behaviors to make the Indian healthcare system more scalable, affordable, accessible, and environmentally friendly. Sustainable development is a priority, as demonstrated by the construction of new green hospitals powered by solar energy.
Dr. Jitendra Sharma, Founder & CEO of Andhra Pradesh MedTech Zone (AMTZ), discussed the need for Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance (ESG) in the healthcare industry. He emphasized that ESG goals can help lower capital costs while promoting better practices.
Commander Navneet Bali, Regional Director – North of Narayana Health, highlighted the critical issue of healthcare accessibility in India. Despite the existence of Ayushman Bharat, nearly 800 million Indians still lack health coverage, leading to a high out-of-pocket expenditure for medical care. The overburdened government hospitals, with daily OPD patients numbering between 18-25 thousand, struggle to provide timely care. Bali believes that technological intervention can help address these challenges and transform India’s healthcare landscape.
Dr. Swadeep Srivastava, Founder of HEAL Foundation & Chairman of the Organizing Committee of the Healthcare Changemakers Conclave, expressed the importance of recognizing the sacrifices of doctor couples and other healthcare changemakers. These awards aim to honor those who have made India’s healthcare system more accessible, affordable, and robust.