Bengaluru drives Isro's telemedicine success

2,300 medical pros participate in live sessions in remote areas across country

The City is driving the Indian Space Research Organisation’s (Isro) telemedicine success. Patients, learners and students across the country have been benefitting from the Isro network.

Over seven sessions, nearly 2,300 doctors/medical professionals from various hospitals and institutes in the City and across the country, participated in the satellite-based Continuing Medical Education (CME) programme. CME aims to spread medical education and treatment from one central location to participants in remote locations across India and Bengaluru is the hub of the satellite-based telemedicine network.

Live audio-video interactions were conducted between specialist doctors in the studio and participants at remote locations. Various hospitals and medical colleges asked about 130 questions, and medical cases were also discussed during the CME sessions. The one-to-many CME facility was introduced in the telemedicine network by incorporating TrainNet, a Learning Management System (LMS). The TrainNet server is installed at the telemedicine hub in the City.

According to Isro officials, the teacher component of TrainNet has the capability to deliver live audio/video feed of the presenter and accompanying power point presentations to all the receiving nodes. A lecture originating from one node can be received by all nodes which have a student component of TrainNet. Besides, the lecture-originating node can have live audio-video interaction with remote student nodes, which is re-transmitted on the network, thus creating a ‘Virtual Classroom’.

“This facility will help hospitals and medical institutions to share their experiences and best practices with each other. As this is a satellite-based network, any node on the network can be a lecture-originating node after installing the teacher component,” Isro officials said.

Network based in City

While the network is based in Bengaluru, there is a studio in Ahmedabad which co-ordinates the various programmes. “Medical education is conducted from the Development and Educational Communication Unit (DECU) - Isro, by inviting Ahmedabad-based specialist doctors to the DECU studio. It is in these sessions that nearly 2,300 doctors/medical professionals from various hospitals and medical institutes participated,” Isro officials said.

The eighth session of CME was conducted from DECU, Ahmedabad Studio on ‘Dermatology in day-to-day practice’ by Dr Bela J Shah. With this CME initiative, Isro’s telemedicine programme has further improvised to benefit medical practitioners/doctors and is enhancing the utility of the network.

Isro’s telemedicine network began with a vision to extend technological support to provide quality medical services to needy patients across the country. In this pursuit, Isro provides dedicated satellite bandwidth, state-of-the-art satellite communication equipment, telemedicine hardware and software to various hospitals/medical colleges.

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