There is strong consensus that smaller hospitals are under threat unless well planned and efficiently managed. Having said that, the role of smaller hospitals in national healthcare delivery in India is critical, with small to mid-level organisations providing the majority of secondary care and selective tertiary care, while large organisations provide tertiary and quaternary care services.
Large hospitals with a wide range of services are the exception rather than the rule, with most hospitals in our country having only 100-250 beds, which is considered a standard size of the hospital.
In the Indian setting, we must comprehend the distinction between 'smaller,' 'rural,' and 'remote' hospitals.'
According to the NABH, a small hospital has less than 50 beds.
A rural hospital is located in tier 3 or tier 4 town or village in any area of India, although a remote location can also be in a city/town or a village but is located far away from the major area of the place or human population. Due to space constraints in the major metropolis, large medical institutions are typically planned in remote locations. With the introduction of Telemedicine, the term remote has taken on a new connotation, as primary care centres with teleconsultation support are referred to as remote clinics/hospitals.
More hospitals are needed in India, particularly in rural areas
India has 1.4 beds for every 1000 people, 1 doctor for every 1445 people, and 1.7 nurses for every 1000 people, yet Over 75% of healthcare infrastructure is concentrated in metro cities, which have just 27% of the overall population—the remaining 73% of Indians lack even basic medical amenities. Over 3,000 doctors are needed in primary care centres, and the need has expanded by 200 per cent in the previous decade. Quality healthcare can be provided in cities, but many people from rural regions cannot afford to travel to cities for treatment.
There are only 0.2 ICU beds per 1000 inhabitants, with 80% of ICU beds privately owned and just 20% in government ownership in cities. A sick patient in a rural location is referred to a higher referral centre, which is typically in an urban setting, and it takes some time for the patient to reach there, which doubles the patient's mortality rate.
Importance of a Pre-Project Market Feasibility
As a result, it is critical that a hospital project in a tier 2/tier 3 or tier 4 town be planned and designed cautiously and with due diligence rather than haphazardly, which could lead to financial mismanagement and liabilities.
What does a Market Feasibility Study indicate
How a Pre-feasibility can help a Hospital
Most rural initiatives fail because they are not planned with the PESTLE (Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Legal, and Environmental) factors in mind. As a result, to ensure market feasibility and financial sustainability, an independent third-party market feasibility research study is required. To eliminate cognitive biases and prejudice, an independent third-party research study is recommended.
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