Post Covid-19: A health-tech opportunity for India
Given the low entry cost, ready availability of trained talent & the goal of scaling up manufacturing in India, start-ups can thrive
The novel coronavirus pandemic is shutting the lights off for the global economy. The health crisis has morphed into an economic catastrophe for the entire world. Covid-19 is likely to have serious and long-term economic consequences around the globe. While most economies are in a state of shock, the impact of this crisis could be more severe than the 2008 Global Financial Crisis or the Great Depression in the early 20th century. Amongst all sectors, one sector where the impact of such a pandemic could have been anticipated was the healthcare sector. Even countries such as the US and the UK, which have conducted exercises in planning for an epidemic, either did not anticipate such devastation or did not learn lessons from those exercises.
Hence, once the pandemic was underway, some of the major shortages were intensive care beds, ventilators and personal protection equipment for caregivers of those infected by the virus. In countries with state-funded healthcare systems, the response to the virus was the most effective. Singapore, Taiwan, New Zealand and Japan are some of the countries that were able to have some control on the pandemic. These countries had the advantage of uniform access to healthcare. People were able to access testing either for free or with significant state subsidy. In times of economic hardship, the cost of accessing healthcare becomes of vital importance.