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Building critical care infrastructure in Rural India – Decoding challenges of funds and investment

Building critical care infrastructure

Building critical care infrastructure in Rural India

Building critical care infrastructure – Over the last few years, India’s healthcare industry has seen substantial advancements. However, these changes are mostly limited to urban regions, while rural communities continue to face a slew of difficulties that require rapid action. Rural areas are home to about 65 percent of the country’s population. Rural India, on the other hand, has only 3.2 government hospital beds per 10,000 people, highlighting the inequality in basic healthcare infrastructure. 
In terms of CSR trends, according to Director’s reports from the corporate affairs ministry’s CSR portal, sourced in September 2021, the number of enterprises involved in CSR activities decreased by nearly 93 percent on an annual basis to 1,619 in 2020-21, down from 22,531 the previous year. According to the India Philanthropy Report 2022, published by consulting firm Bain & Co and non-governmental organization Dasra, healthcare got Rs 6,363 crore in CSR funding in FY21, up 30% from Rs 4,888 crore in FY20. 
Following COVID, a number of corporate and non-governmental groups have stepped forward to address the important concerns confronting rural healthcare. They are, however, up against a slew of obstacles. Companies and individuals looking to invest in rural healthcare projects encounter a number of hurdles, including funding and investment.

Building critical care infrastructure

The following are some of the major obstacles to the smooth implementation of critical care projects:

1. Identifying a trustworthy on-the-ground implementation partner

Building a reliable infrastructure necessitates the assistance of a trustworthy and knowledgeable on-the-ground partner, which corporations investing in rural infrastructure for CSR programmes sometimes struggle to find. Only robust collaboration between these two stakeholders, and on-the-ground partners bringing their skills and necessary knowledge to create critical care infrastructure, can long-term healthcare projects have the desired impact.

2. Concerns about risk management

For large-scale healthcare projects to succeed, risk management is essential. Large CapEx projects are fraught with hazards such as project skill gaps, under-budgeting, and a lack of human resources. One of the main reasons for poor investment in rural healthcare projects is a lack of risk management. Risk management from an investment and operational standpoint may be onerous for businesses, especially when working with an NGO that has various risk elements to consider.

3. Medical personnel who aren’t well-trained

If there is no skilled employees to use the equipment and facilities supplied, a complex infrastructure is useless. While people and private groups are willing to mobilize resources to help supplement the healthcare infrastructure, there is a critical shortage of competent workers who can make the most of it. One of the main reasons why firms are hesitant to invest in rural healthcare infrastructure is a dearth of doctors and paramedical workers.

4. Insufficient internet access

Another issue is the poor internet penetration in rural areas. Telehealth programmes require access to high-speed internet. NGOs and business groups working to build tele-health programmes in rural areas sometimes encounter internet access problems. Unfortunately, high-speed internet is not available in rural regions, which is a major impediment to the implementation of tele-health programmes for distant patient care.

5. A lack of basic infrastructure and human resources

Organizations who want to have a long-term effect with their healthcare projects need a large workforce that is dedicated to the project until it is completed. A key difficulty is a lack of human resources to carry out such undertakings. Furthermore, the logistical issues involved with the transportation of people and supplies in rural areas are a major concern, given the poor state of the roads. 
Creating a long-term, sustainable influence in rural communities is no easy feat, as there are numerous practical challenges to overcome. Despite the fact that many organizations and people are willing to invest in rural health infrastructure, the multiple barriers to doing so deter them from making a meaningful impact. While money isn’t always the most pressing issue, a lack of effective ways to put that money to work is something that must be addressed. To some extent, private-public partnerships or collaboration with a reputable on-the-ground partner with a track record in critical care infrastructure development can help overcome the constraints. Only genuine effort and dedication from organizations, in addition to monetary contributions, may result in a long-term influence.