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Is India Progressing towards Improved Healthcare in 2018? A major change that the diagnostics sector needs to see in 2018 is in the area of empathy towards patients

By Ameera Shah

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In recent times, the Indian healthcare industry has seen a number of developments and innovations. It has now reached a place from where it can grow exponentially, given the right resources.

Amid this impressive progress, one industry that has emerged as a prominent game changer in the healthcare sector is 'diagnostics'. In a market where there are no distinct governing laws to check the quality of tests and results, private players have taken upon themselves to introduce standardization in their practice and follow protocols set by international medical bodies to ensure consistent and world-class service to all their consumers.

Healthcare-related Reforms

Major reforms have been outlined since the Modi government came to power. Few reforms in the healthcare sector have been the introduction of common entrance test (NEET), the new health policy that focuses on sourcing of care from the private sector, an increase in the domestic manufacturing of medical equipment that will lead to increase in its affordability and availability, launch of Digital India campaign under which E-Health was one of the initiatives which has made receiving lab reports & OPD appointments quicker and simpler. To match the standards of international pharma companies, an emphasis has been laid on investing more and more in our research and development.

These upgrades have constantly proved to be a promising sign of success. But as growth needs to be continuous, there are certain areas where attention is required. To talk of the same, we are yet to introduce guidelines in the regulatory space, as the establishment of unauthorised laboratories has been witnessed lately. There have been inconsistencies in the Clinical Establishment Act as well. Hence, we require certain protocols to be strictly followed to curb the rise of dubious pathologists. This is essentially because our government is yet to set up appropriate governing and regulatory bodies for quality control.

Being a private authorized diagnostics company, we believe enhancement in health is the primary agenda, with private companies introducing the technology and the public sector letting in subsidies.

Empathy Equals Growth

Apart from the governing reforms, a major change that the diagnostics sector needs to see in 2018 is that of empathy towards our patients. The premise of our sector is care and when we are able to build trust and long-term emotional connections with our patients, this will automatically support the financial growth of the company.

When empathy seeps down across levels, to even the lowest ranked employees, this creates a sense of belonging and makes it that much easier to align their personal goals with that of the organisation.

IT and Inclusion

IT in the healthcare sector and evolving technology has benefited the pathology industry. Health tracking mobile applications and online services such as booking appointments online for preventive healthcare check-ups, booking a path/lab test, obtaining reports online are further shaping this segment.

For any organisation aiming to become a success in this rapidly growing diagnostic laboratories market, the best move at the moment is to plan to invest in tier II and tier III cities of India. The companies should expand their network by collaborating with more health institutes and increase their collection centres in India resulting in widespread reach and more access for the masses.


In the upcoming year, we look forward to stringent regulations in the diagnostic market that will resist the entry of dubious players. Implementation of these standardized protocols will ensure consistent and world-class services to all the consumers.

Ameera Shah

Managing Director and Promoter, Metropolis Healthcare

Ameera Shah is the Managing Director and Promoter of Metropolis Healthcare Ltd. She has revolutionized the pathology industry from being a doctor-led practice to a professional corporate group in an extremely unregulated, competitive and fragmented market.

Under her leadership, Metropolis has evolved from its single-pathology-laboratory status to a fully integrated multinational chain of 150 diagnostic centers and more than 1000 collection centers across the globe. Ms. Shah received a degree in Finance from The University of Texas at Austin and has also completed the prestigious Owner-President Management Program at Harvard Business School.

Forbes Asia listed Ameera Shah in the Asia’s Most Powerful Women, 2015, for powering the rise of Metropolis Healthcare and brining a significant shift in the diagnostics industry.

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