The 2010 annual meeting of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies, held in the United States, was themed around health care innovations. Dr. Kim Ramaswamy, retinal surgeon and chief medical officer of Aravind-Madurai, was asked to present on the Aravind model. His talk was followed by an animated panel discussion on how Aravind’s core principles could be transferred to the West. The panel included senior executives from both the National Health Service (NHS) in the United Kingdom and the United States Department of Health and Human Services.

The last slide in Kim’s presentation included a telling graph. It showed Aravind performing roughly 50 percent of the entire NHS’s ophthalmic surgical volume, while ...

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