The Health October 2020 - Page 17

Ainqa Health seeks to transform population health through a whole digital health ecosystem

| Innovation | october , 2020 | The Health

17

From womb to tomb

Ainqa Health seeks to transform population health through a whole digital health ecosystem

BY KHIRTINI K KUMARAN

GCI MSC Sdn Bhd ( GCI ) was

established in 1997 to build technologies in healthcare . Though a Malaysian entity , GCI ’ s main focus for the last 20 years has been the Middle East : with nationwide presence in Qatar , United Arab Emirates & Jordan ’ s public sector and remains within the private sector in Lebanon , Kuwait and Kurdistan .
As a new decade emerges , GCI has reinvented itself as a global company and is now known as Ainqa Health ( Ainqa ).
Ainqa Health was formed to lead a new direction towards a holistic healthcare network that is both scalable and transformational , be it nationally , or internationally . This covers digital health reform , to which Ainqa is working on with several other countries and is planning on doing the same in Asia .
The Health sat down with Ainqa ’ s Chief Medical Innovation Officer Dr Dhesi Baha Raja , where he shared with us the direction Ainqa will be embarking on , as well as providing us with a greater outlook on how digital health is the future for healthcare .
“ We in Ainqa Health have a very different view on digital health . It ’ s no longer about products and solutions . It ’ s about creating a holistic digital health ecosystem ,” explained Dr Dhesi .
Ainqa is set to collaborate with a renowned technology university based in Malaysia ( to be announced soon ) to operate Ainqa ’ s own research and development ( R & D ) centre for Asia .
“ All matters relating to quantum computing , machine learning , deep learning , blockchain and artificial intelligence ( AI ) are going to be handled by this centre . We will call it AINQA Labs .”
Focus on using technology
Ainqa has developed a new arm within the global company that focuses on the exploration of novel technology & life sciences within the medical field with a special interest in pandemic preparedness plan , maternal and child health as well as organ transplant . The company hopes such technology will facilitate organ donation pairings between donors and recipients and reduce maternal and infant mortality globally .
“ What we see as a challenge today is - how can we innovate and transform population health by connecting the dots of a person from his birth and throughout his or her life ? The continuum of care across your lifteime is paramount and we advocate this in AINQA ; the principle we call ‘ from womb to tomb ’.”
Dr Dhesi said that his role as the Chief Medical Innovation Officer is to look into the journey of a person : before he gets sick , once he ’ s sick , or even once he reaches rehabilitative care .
“ So , there ’ s this whole journey of digital medicine ; through promotive medicine , preventive medicine , predictive medicine , curative medicine and rehabilitative medicine that countries need to adopt .
“ This is where my team and I play a role in ensuring this particular tech-driven ecosystem creates an impact on the population .”
Empowering patients through digital healthcare
It is of no question that Dr Dhesi believes digital health is the spine of today ’ s healthcare .
“ The Universal Healthcare Coverage establishes that healthcare is about affordability and accessibility . In this modern age where changes are rapid and constant , there is no denying that accessibility can only be achieved through technology .
“ At the end of the day , the community or population wants a seamless connectivity with their physicians .
“ When health records are seamless or within reach of an individual , they can move without restrictions . The data follows the person when they are being referred across providers ; be it public , private , primary care or as simple as dental care . The health record should follow them ,” added Dr Dhesi .
According to him , seamless connectivity will save a lot of lives since unnecessary tests can be reduced . In addition , a patient can be treated based on the availability of their health records at any given point of time .
“ This is one aspect of how digital medicine through Electronic Medical Record , is going to help empower the person or the patients .”
Ainqa is also focusing on bettering the management of population health . Dr Dhesi and his team heavily impart on the importance of going digital when solving a problem .
“ The only way to understand the trend
Dr Dhesi Baha Raja , Chief Medical Innovation Officer , Ainqa Health .
of disease nowadays is through data science and data analysis . There is no way for human beings to compute such a large amount of data with the conventional way of doing things .
“ With artificial intelligence , machine learning , and coupled with quantum computing , there will be supersonic speed to analyse big data , apart from making new drug discoveries and even enhancing clinical trials ,” he said .
Digital health in Malaysia
“ Compared to many Southeast Asian countries , I think Malaysia is doing fairly good .”
The biggest challenge , according to Dr Dhesi , is the mindset and perception from both provider and client .
Questions arise on whether doctors will spend more time on computers or physically examining the patient as they are required to compute the diagnosis and data .
Meanwhile , patients tend to worry about seeing a doctor virtually as compared to attending the clinic or the hospital . There are also concerns about the security and privacy of their personal information .
Nevertheless , he noted there had been a behavioural change or shift due to the pandemic , where people are more receptive towards virtual consultation and telemedicine now , compared to pre Covid-19 era .
“ The Ministry of Health ( MoH ) and the Malaysian Medical Council ( MMC ) are working closely to come up with guidelines to support the ecosystem of virtual consultations today .”
Acknowledging that technology changes rapidly , he highlighted the importance for the government to take a step back and relook into the existing infrastructure and roadmaps .
“ The agility or robustness to move from one technology to another technology should be considered when building a roadmap for a country . The technology has to be industry-agnostic .”
He continued : “ In other words , the pharmaceutical industry , dental information system or a GP clinical system needs to be able to integrate with the national platform . The system should be robust enough to simply be plugged in since interoperability is key for a better continuum of care .
The only way to solve these grand challenges is to move away from developing systems or technologies that is very much “ provider-centric ” and instead move towards “ person-centricity ”. This is the only way to consolidate health data for citizens to enjoy better delivery of care across providers . — The Health