IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

The role of information technology in designs of healthcare trade


  • Ajeet Mathur

    (Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations)


Information Technology (IT) is poised to revolutionise healthcare trade through new thresholds in human connectivity. This paper focuses on the expanding role of IT in three distinct but related categories: (a) design and development of healthcare products and services, (b) delivery systems, and, (c) healthcare administration. Through information power that IT enables, capacities of decision-makers are continually transformed in how they link with each other, in the here and now. This not only promotes conventional trade in services and e-commerce and facilitates worldwide convergence in several aspects of healthcare management and organisation. However, this process also raises fears and anxieties because the pervasive nature of IT and its uneven diffusion increase some vulnerabilities where policy safeguards would be needed. The process of IT diffusion occurs at many different points of impact in the international economy. Thus, policy choices have to cater to a wide range of national and regional needs and circumstances concerning rights to health, rights to trade and rights to development. National policies and international regimes need to strike a harmonious balance between these sets of rights. The persistence of unresolved conflicts of rights and conflicts of interests point to the need for new international arrangements to be mandated and resourced. The extent to which this can be achieved is uncertain. This uncertainty is traceable to the ways responsibility for healthcare, authority to design healthcare products and systems, and the power to organise healthcare delivery remain separate or come together. The restructuring of private investments to integrate IT with life sciences in public-private partnerships is a sign of the growing significance of IT in healthcare. It is also a reminder of how powerfully IT could be harnessed in pursuit of millenium development goals.

Suggested Citation

  • Ajeet Mathur, 2003. "The role of information technology in designs of healthcare trade," Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations, New Delhi Working Papers 111, Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations, New Delhi, India.
  • Handle: RePEc:ind:icrier:111

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Reynolds, Lloyd G, 1983. "The Spread of Economic Growth to the Third World: 1850-1980," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 21(3), pages 941-980, September.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ind:icrier:111. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (G.K. Manjunath) The email address of this maintainer does not seem to be valid anymore. Please ask G.K. Manjunath to update the entry or send us the correct email address. General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.