The Telemedicine centre of Gauhati Medical College was started in January, 2003 under an agreement between the department of Space, Govt. of India represented by the North east Space Application Centre of ISRO, the North eastern Council and the Department of Health & Family Welfare, Govt. of Assam.
Assam Electronic Development Corporation (AMTRON) acted as the nodal agency in implementing the project in Gauhati Medical College Hospital.The computer hardware and satellite antenna as well as the transponder time in INSAT were provided by ISRO free of cost. The centre has connectivity with several telemedicine centers of the country. Prominent amongst them are AIIMS, New Delhi, Narayana Hridalaya, Bangalore, Sankar Netralaya, Chennai, S.R.Medical College, Chennai, Trivandrum Medical College, Amritha Institute Of Medical Sciences, Cochin etc. The centre provides free teleconsultation for the patients of GMCH.
It has facilities to scan the X-rays, ultrasound scans, CT scans and MRI, digital photography of histopathology and blood slides and ECG for cardiac cases which can be transmitted to any of the above mentioned centers for consultations. The centre also can download live CME programmes and workshops conducted in various centers of the countrey for the benefit of the post-graduate students of GMC.
The centre is currently making arrangements for consultation with the Apollo group of hospitals situated in Chennai, New Delhi and Hyderabad at a nominal fee. It has also plans for coordinating with other telemedicine centers which are likely to come up in various district hospitals in Assam and the neighboring states of the north east region. A pilot project to link up with mobile centers temporarily set up in remote rural areas is already taken up with ISRO. If this becomes successful, it may help in case of natural disasters like flood, earthquake and also during the outbreak of epidemics, when the mobile centers can send patient data to GMC for specialist consultation.