We must adopt to change positively. When forced by situations like the COVID-19 pandemic, when compelled to change our priorities, we accepted that health is the real wealth every human being, especially our future generations, can possess. Now, we must move forward and embrace the fact that we must make substantial investments in creating a robust healthcare system, especially regarding child healthcare in the world, that will set an example.
In this regard, AMRI Hospitals is a leading private healthcare service provider in Eastern India. It is one of the fastest-growing healthcare organizations with three super-speciality hospitals at prominent locations, including Dhakuria, Mukundapur and Salt Lake and another multi-speciality healthcare unit in Bhubaneswar, Odisha.
Rupak Barua, Director & Group CEO, said that the Group has been offering world-class treatment and exemplary clinical outcomes, backed by latest technologies, acclaimed physicians, and international standard facilities, for the last 25 years.
Embracing the Changing Healthcare Dynamics
As you are all aware, life as we knew it has changed since March 2020 due to the global COVID-19 pandemic. Like everybody else, we faced some difficulties adapting to the altered circumstances but learnt quickly and soon found our feet.
Within a few weeks of the pandemic hitting India, we acclimatised ourselves to the rules of “new normal” by making relevant adjustments to our SOPs, making necessary alterations to our physical infrastructure, and modifying our protocols. I am proud to inform you that AMRI continued with its success in offering the same clinical excellence that has been counted as our hallmark even before the pandemic.
While we became the first private hospital in Eastern India to start treating COVID-19 patients, we dedicated four of our seven towers, set up several satellite centres, and converted India’s largest football stadium into a large field hospital, to offer the best of our services.
Looking back at the last 25 years of our existence, we are happy to count the millions of people who have walked out through our doors with a smile. I am happy to add that despite challenges, we are steadfast in our journey of affecting significant changes to the healthcare sector, and we are continuing on a path of stable growth and infusion of new vigour into AMRI Hospitals.
Two Decades of Selfless Service
AMRI Hospitals, founded in 1996, is one of the leading private hospital networks in Eastern India, with the hospital Group offering a wide range of services for both paediatric and adult patients, besides being one of the few hospitals in the region to have state-of-the-art ICUs for Paediatric as well as Neonates. AMRI Hospital boasts of a multi-disciplinary team of highly qualified and experienced paediatricians, neonatologists, surgeons, therapists, and nurses across different specialities. While the group has always strived to ensure the best possible care and treatment for children across all age groups, in keeping with international standards, the paediatric wards at AMRI are separate from the adult areas.
With world-class doctors on board, AMRI has pioneered several paediatric surgeries and procedures in Eastern India, including the first paediatric TVUR and the first minimally-invasive cardiac surgery, which give us an edge over others. AMRI also boasts of a panel of cardiologists, nephrologists, critical care and internal medicine experts and doctors from other specialities specialising in treating paediatric cases. Lauded for its service and clinical excellence, AMRI does not just offer specialized Emergency Retrieval Services. Our paediatric wards provide a variety of advanced treatment platforms like non-invasive, conventional, and high-frequency ventilation, Continuous End Tidal CO2 monitoring, state-of-the-art Blood Gas Machine with Lactate Value, 24×7 renal replacement therapy, ultrasound and echocardiography, ultrasound-guided vascular access and pleural drain placement, ambulance equipped with blood pressure monitoring facility, paediatric units for dialysis, bronchoscope and endoscopy, advanced neonatal therapies like HFOV, whole body cooling for HIE, dedicated neonatal emergency transport services, latest open care systems and incubators, comprehensive care of extremely pre-term (less than 28 weeks and less than 1000 gm) and critically ill babies, isolation unit for potentially septic neonates, Laminar Flow to prepare TPN, and Cerebral Function Monitors.
The Leadership of Excellence
Mr Barua, a healthcare professional for more than three decades, has carved a niche as one of the most prominent healthcare administrators in Eastern India and nationally. Since he took up the reins of AMRI Hospitals in 2014 as Group CEO, he has set AMRI on a path of fast-track growth, looking beyond revenue generation by focusing on ‘service with a smile’ and superior clinical excellence. While he encouraged the workforce to strive for improved quality through better patient care, he also identified technological advances that would help provide both care and precision for the treatment of patients. Under his guidance, AMRI introduced the latest innovations in healthcare technology and clinical and management protocols to make the Group stand out as a leading healthcare service provider.
Sharing his inspiration behind venturing into this sector, Mr Barua says he believes himself to be a dedicated, target-oriented individual, committed to growth, and these values keep inspiring him. The turning point in his life was when he stepped into the healthcare sector, where he took up challenges one after another, and met these challenges successfully. Mr Barua earned a name for his problem-solving skills and for bringing about a new era in the healthcare sector of Kolkata. His father has also been a major inspiration all through for his determination and active involvement in helping others, who, till his last breath, were associated with many welfare activities. His father’s philosophy in life was to serve people and leave behind a legacy of service. This philosophy inspired Mr Barua and made him ever ready for new challenges and frontiers.
The Inspirational Philosophy of Serving People
Being an experienced leader, sharing his opinion on how the adoption of modern technologies like AI and ML is impacting the Child Healthcare space and how AMRI is adapting to the change, Mr Barua says that technological innovations have been adding value to healthcare from the early days of modern medicine. Robotics, Virtual ICU, telemedicine and remote care platforms, AI and Machine Learning, Cloud technology, Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality are some of the advances that are redefining healthcare delivery and in-patient care. “While core technological developments like Internet and mobile telephony are changing every aspect of our lives, each of these innovations will help us to provide better care and more precise clinical outcome to our patients, both paediatric and adult,” he says.
AMRI Hospitals acquired a fair idea about telemedicine and remote care facilities through first-hand experience during the pandemic. While they have already started using some of these innovations, they will keep on exploring such ideas. “I believe that the faster we adapt to these innovations, the more beneficial it will be for us to gain an edge,” Mr Barua adds.
According to him, challenges make life interesting, and life without any would make us take things for granted, leaving us stuck in a rut. However, it is important to differentiate between challenges and roadblocks, and there are some we face daily. “The primary challenge for any private healthcare service provider is to live ahead of the curve by exploring new ideas and adapting to technological changes, which in today’s world happen almost overnight. Another challenge is sustained digital access, for which we urge the Government further to improve infrastructure for the unhindered movement of data feeds. We would also like to request the Government to reconsider some policies on tax breaks and import duties of high-end medical equipment so that we can pass on the benefits to our patients,” he points out.
Fostering Evidence Based Quality Healthcare
In his advice to budding entrepreneurs who aspire to venture into the healthcare space, Mr Barua says that challenges will keep coming, but a true leader will always find the strength and the capacity to remain motivated and face anything. The idea is to keep taking up challenging tasks one after the other and meet these challenges successfully because, at the end of the day, only this attribute will help you earn a name, not just as a leader but also as an example explorer of new paths. One must also keep in mind that the success of any company depends as much on the leader as it does on the leader’s vision to choose the right direction, besides identifying the right kind of talent. It is also important to form the right kind of team, which will help drive the organisation’s achievements forward.
On scaling up AMRI’s operations and offerings in the future, Mr Barua reveals that since its inception, AMRI has set its vision on providing clinical evidence-based, value-for-money, quality healthcare service, with a particular focus on offering the latest technological support.
Across all its four hospitals, they have substantially invested in advanced biomedical equipment over the years. As part of their ongoing business plan, they are replacing ageing equipment with the latest ones in a structured manner so that they can have a faster turnaround time in their diagnostic investigations and imaging areas, as well as in surgical interventions.
Investing in Health for the Best Future
These investments will essentially be in areas such as radiology, imaging, radiotherapy, surgical microscopes, nuclear medicine, and critical care, among others. They want to explore the possibilities of upgrading their equipment, like MRI, using AI tools to maximize utility for more efficiency. “We are also actively adapting to surgical robots, particularly for orthopaedics and neurology,” concludes Mr Barua.
AMRI Hospitals has been one of the most lauded private healthcare services providers, with several awards and accolades to its credit, including international recognition.
The Group has ranked among the Top 2 in The Week-Hansa Annual Hospital Ranking Survey from 2017 to 2022, besides being among a handful of Indian hospitals to find a place in the Newsweek-Statista Global Hospital Ranking Survey since 2020.
The Group has also won several top awards, including ‘Excellence in Critical Care’ at Zee 24 Ghanta Healthcare Conclave in 2021 and 2022, the Economic Times ‘Best Brand’ award in 2021 and 2022, and the COVID Warriors Award 2021, organized jointly by the British Deputy High Commission, Millennium Post, and SKAI International.