Ashok Kumar Mahapatra, Saroj Kanta Mishra, Lily Kapoor, and Indra Pratap Singh
Telemedicine & E-Health, 2009
"Ensuring quality medical education in all the medical colleges across India based on uniform curriculum prescribed by a regulatory body and maintaining a uniform standard are dependent on availability of an excellent infrastructure. Such infrastructure includes qualified teachers, knowledge resources, learning materials, and advanced education technology, which is a challenge in developing countries due to financial and logistic constraints. Advancement in telecommunication, information science, and technology provides an opportunity to exchange knowledge and skill across geographically dispersed organizations by networking academic medical centers of excellence with medical colleges and institutes to practice distance learning using information and communication technology (ICT)-based tools. These may be as basic as commonly used Web-based tools or may be as advanced as virtual reality, simulation, and telepresence-based collaborative learning environment. The scenario in India is no different from any developing country, but there is considerable progress due to technical advancement in these sectors. Telemedicine and tele-education in health science, is gradually getting adopted into the Indian Health System after decade-long pilot studies across the country. A recent recommendation of the National Knowledge Commission, once implemented, would ensure a gigabyte network across all the educational institutions of the country including medical colleges. Availability of indigenous satellite communication technology and the government policy of free bandwidth provision for societal development sector have added strength to set up infrastructure to pilot several telemedicine educational projects across the country."