Inclusive digital healthcare

A close up of a man's brown hands holding a mobile device.  Three is a blue wash over the image.

The rapid expansion of telehealth during COVID 19 protected patients and healthcare but often excluded the health and rehabilitation needs of people with disability. The VirtuCare project draws in some key players in the field of inclusive digital health care to maximise the potential of virtual care to benefit those with disability in India.

With the support of the Australian Department of Education and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the VirtuCare Network (led by the University of Melbourne) partnered with the Australia India Institute, to deliver a hybrid workshop at the Indian Institute of Public Health focusing on the future of inclusive digital health in Australia and India. Presenters and panellists highlighted the opportunities and challenges within the inclusive digital healthcare and technology sector. This workshop identified priority areas for bilateral research collaboration between Australian and Indian researchers, experts, and professionals.

A newly released report of the research collaboration workshop summarises the initial steps and findings from that symposium, providing valuable insights on improving the accessibility of virtual healthcare for people with disabilities. It delves into existing approaches promoting inclusivity in digital health and presents innovative ideas for the future. Policymakers, healthcare professionals, and researchers interested in advancing virtual healthcare and ensuring inclusivity for all individuals will find this report to be a valuable resource.

The bilateral relationship between India and Australia highlights the economic benefits of investing in people with disability in both countries, and how transformative that can be. We encourage you to share the report with colleagues who would benefit from its insights.

Over the next 12 months, the VirtuCare project moves to the next phase of ensuring these innovative solutions can truly create inclusive societies for all. Together we can ensure Virtual Healthcare improves the health and wellbeing of people with disability in India.

Professor Nathan Grills, a Public Health Physician and Australian Research Council Fellow, works largely in India on disability, non communicable diseases and health curriculum development and training. Nathan is leading the VirtuCare Project.

More Information

Professor Nathan Grills