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SPECIAL ARTICLE
Year : 2010  |  Volume : 54  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 131-136

Public health informatics in India: The potential and the challenges


1 Professor and Head, Community Medicine, People's College of Medical Sciences and Research Centre, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India
2 Director, Public Health Education, Public Health Foundation of India, New Delhi, India

Correspondence Address:
A V Athavale
Professor and Head, Community Medicine, People's College of Medical Sciences and Research Centre, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0019-557X.75735

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Public health informatics is emerging as a new and distinct specialty area in the global scenario within the broader discipline of health informatics. The potential role of informatics in reducing health disparities in underserved populations has been identified by a number of reports from all over the world. The article discusses the scope, the limitations, and future perspective of this novice discipline in context to India. It also highlights information and technology related tools namely Geographical Information Systems, Telemedicine and Electronic Medical Record/Electronic Health Record. India needs to leverage its "technology" oriented growth until now (e.g., few satellite-based telemedicine projects, etc.) simultaneously toward development of "information"-based public health informatics systems in future. Under the rapidly evolving scenario of global public health, the future of the public health governance and population health in India would depend upon building and integrating the comprehensive and responsive domain of public health informatics.


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