Mediangels.com is a e-health company specializing in providing second opinions over the internet in the laissez-faire Indian market for health care of about 1.2 billion people. India, similar to China, has no social safety net. Health insurance is as much a new industry as is the internet. India’s doctors, however, are well respected both for their medical training and for patient care around the world.
As the United States struggles politically to control health care costs in an ideological battle in Washington and the 50 states about bending the cost curve for about 300 million Americans, Mediangels.com aspires to go global when many frustrated foreigners from the West are visiting India for cheaper but quality healthcare including surrogate motherhood.
It appears India is finally managing to fuse its rising expertise in information technology and healthcare to deliver telemedicine to the world a global market worth trillions of dollars by 2050.
Caught in the morass of long-term government obligations on healthcare despite the health reform and uncertainty about the future of the financial markets in spite of the recent financial regulatory reform, and mired in a test of wills with Iran over nuclear power and anti-Semitism, with China on currency and trade and Russia on missile defense, the United States has lost focus on bringing the world together on the Prague promise of 2009.
India, the market for oil and gas for Russia and Iran, is leveraging that relationship from its Cold War days to balance its domestic politics between the Communist Party of India, Congress Party in power and the right wing BJP which had moved forward civil nuclear talks with Bush 43-Rice, to favor a global peaceful nuclear fuel clearinghouse as suggested by Russia.
Such a move by India not only defuses tensions with Iran, a sore point in US-India relations, but could also place the country at the forefront of nuclear disarmament, in a turnabout from its obsolete aspirations to obtain a seat on the United Nations Security Council as a permanent member among offensive nuclear powers.
Pushing nuclear disarmament while supporting safer and cleaner nuclear power, nuclear waste being not as much of a controversial issue as in the United States over the Yucca Mountain disposal site, gives India the high ground which the United States has lost since 2009.
Energy, health, information technology and finance in a more open market since 1993 make India an ideal business partner as it expands its presence in the American market while allowing more US corporations into the Indian market to tap consumption in both places for both countries, its infrastructure, however, grossly falling behind together with its thinking on broad-based sustainable development to benefit its large population, expected to be the largest in the world by 2050.
Achieving sustainable growth will allow India to leverage America’s rising dependence on the very large emerging Indian market, estimated at $48 trillion if India were to be at per capita gross domestic product (GDP) parity with the United States (US) and the Europe Union (EU) in 2011, a feat unsustainable by either the US or EU without a similarly large population because US and EU per capita consumption levels must be about 3 times as large as India’s for GDPs to converge.
Regionalism through sustainable growth, or sustainable integration, in South Asia and elsewhere will achieve both per capita and GDP convergence, and most importantly together with exchange rate stability, monetary policy independence and open capital markets.
India is a silently unfolding story of economic expansion, adopting the trends and ways of American capitalism, mostly uncritically, amidst the current global economic confusion the United States has wrought.