Rajeev Sadanandan (CEO, HSTP) writes
The Tata Trusts have been working on reducing the burden of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) in India in partnership with Dell Technologies and the Government of India through its NCD portal. We are happy to share that the Tata Trusts have collaborated with the Health System Transformation Platform (HSTP) for the management of the NCD portal. This is a significant step forward for HSTP in its mission to impact the healthcare ecosystem of our country positively.
Nearly 65% of all deaths and a corresponding level of morbidity in India are due to Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs). WHO estimates suggest that every year around 5.8 million people die from NCDs (CVD, lung diseases, cancer, and diabetes) and that every 1 in 4 Indians has a risk of dying from NCD before reaching the age of 70 years.
The cornerstone of the Government of India’s (GoI) National Programme for Non-Communicable Diseases is the screening of the population estimated to be at risk of NCDs. The NCD programme design managed via the NCD app is a step forward to influence the health-seeking behaviour of the population with proactive screening of the eligible population, and a robust tracking programme to manage the continuum of care of the persons put on treatment.
In line with the idea of simplifying health management, digitalising the NCD database to strengthen and streamline the process was prioritised by the Government. The app enables efficient management of cases by health workers to track, record and monitor patients' progress, thus improving care standards. It has adopted the CPHC NCD Application (now called the ‘National NCD IT portal’) developed and deployed by the Tata Trusts and their technology partner Dell Technologies. This has since been deployed across 33 States and UTs covering more than 600 districts. At the end of the first phase in 2023, more than 308 million individuals had been registered, 137 million individuals screened for NCDs, and 10.5 million persons had been put on treatment.
It was to build on the achievements of the first phase, that Tata Trusts entrusted the HSTP with the management of the next phase of the management of the NCD portal. HSTP will aim to optimize the use of the program data for improving the efficiency of early detection and long-term management of patients in addition to sustaining and expanding the use of the portal to the frontline health workers In line with the mission of HSTP we will deploy data analytics and data mining of the data gathered in the National NCD IT Portal linked to other health data sources to improve planning and delivery of NCD services.
HSTP will aim to combine the IT architecture created under the NCD Portal with the ABDM architecture using the ABHA to track patients across their life course across different parts of the health system including treatments for downstream complications of NCDs and explore the possibility of utilising the NCD platform to combine various data collected at the HWCs and PHCs on different health conditions of the same individual. HSTP will collaborate with the central and state governments to analyse anonymized data to generate evidence for policymaking and health system planning and financing for the future including estimating the requirement for hospital services, human resources for health (HRH), and finances, and to support states to develop plans to address the assessed need.
The NCD app aims to prevent, control, and monitor the spread of NCDs with proactive screening measures, digital health records, and a smooth referral system. The app not only simplifies the health workers’ tasks by eliminating paperwork but also empowers them with data-driven tools for more effective and efficient healthcare delivery. It enables comprehensive health data management, streamlines workflows, data-driven decision-making for patient-centric care and an improved follow-up process. With the hope of new learnings and insights for improvement, HSTP is looking forward to this journey so as to impact NCDs in India. With the application of technology in the continuum of care and its impact within communities across India, we hope to see increased awareness and improved health-seeking behaviour and making treatment and control more accessible.