Courses Education

When health is your business

For those who possess technology and entrepreneurial acumen, coupled with a penchant for healthcare, pursuing this course will open up several lucrative avenues

With India being a medical tourist destination for patients seeking affordable treatment, there will be a demand for healthcare professionals. To meet this demand, a new course on Healthcare Engineering has emerged, for students. It is a multidisciplinary speciality that focuses on advancing healthcare through engineering approaches, involving both healthcare and engineering professionals. Candidates not only need to know their subject, but also need to possess entrepreneurial skills, along with business and technology acumen.

Skills

One needs to know and apply engineering principles to come up with solutions for health issues. At times, it is also concerned with the development and design of a medical product. Some of the major requirements are analytical and communication skills, having a good eye for design, and attention to detail.

Education qualifications

To pursue a bachelor’s degree, a candidate must have cleared the 10+2 exams with science subjects such as Biology, Math, Physics and Chemistry in class XII. The curriculum centres on application of engineering tools in the healthcare industry and developing new-age equipment to protect people from illness and injury and property from damage. Students pursuing Chemical, Civil, Computer, Electrical, Environmental, Industrial, Information, Materials, Mechanical, Software, and Systems Engineering can also become healthcare engineers. The main challenge is to apply their knowledge for problem-solving and advancing healthcare facilities. Major subjects include:

Biomechanics: The study of the structure, function and motion of the mechanical aspects of biological systems by using the methods of mechanics.

Medical devices: Students should know about all devices used these days, as they benefit patients by helping healthcare providers diagnose and treat them and help improve their quality of life.

Genetic engineering: A set of technologies used to change the genetic make-up of cells, including the transfer of genes within and across species boundaries to produce improved or novel organisms.

Emergency management: According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), emergency is a state in which normal procedures are interrupted, and immediate measures need to be taken to prevent that state from turning into a disaster. Thus, emergency management is crucial to avoid the disruption transforming into a disaster, which is even harder to recover from.

Two major fields

Engineering for healthcare intervention: This comes into play when there are chances of any treatment, preventive care, or test that a person can take or undergo to improve health or to help with a particular problem.

Engineering for healthcare systems: Engineering involved in the complete network of organisations, agencies, facilities, information systems, management systems, financing mechanisms, logistics, and all trained personnel engaged in delivering healthcare within a geographical area.

Universities offering this course

Since it is a relatively new course in India, no Indian University offers it as yet. But some international universities offering the course include Texas Tech University, Cambridge University and John Hopkins University.

The writer is Vice Chancellor, JK Lakshmipat University

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Printable version | Jul 2, 2020 3:29:23 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/education/when-health-is-your-business/article31676988.ece

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