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 Table of Contents  
EDITORIAL
Year : 2021  |  Volume : 5  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 157-163

ICT initiatives of CCRAS


Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences, Ministry of Ayush, Government of India, New Delhi, India

Date of Submission15-Mar-2022
Date of Decision15-Mar-2022
Date of Acceptance17-Mar-2022
Date of Web Publication29-Apr-2022

Correspondence Address:
Narayanam Srikanth
Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences, Ministry of Ayush, Government of India, New Delhi
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/jras.jras_42_22

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How to cite this article:
Srikanth N. ICT initiatives of CCRAS. J Res Ayurvedic Sci 2021;5:157-63

How to cite this URL:
Srikanth N. ICT initiatives of CCRAS. J Res Ayurvedic Sci [serial online] 2021 [cited 2022 May 22];5:157-63. Available from: http://www.jrasccras.com/text.asp?2021/5/4/157/344410



Adopting the latest advances in technology is essential for being up-to-date with the current times. The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) states that “Information and Communication Technology (ICT) can complement, enrich and transform education for the better” and is very crucial in achieving “Sustainable Development Goal” (SDG) i.e. to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.[1],[2] In today’s scenario where there is exponential increase in computing power and use of ICT in medicine, it is essential for all health related systems to utilize ICT for research and development (RandD) as well as in clinical practices to providing better patient care. Ayurveda as a recognized form of medical system also needs to utilize ICT to achieve aforementioned goals. Most of the data in pertaining to Ayurveda is in the analog form. Thus, conversion of such data from analog to digital form is the primary requisite for further data mining and analysis.

CCRAS, the apex research and development organization under Ministry of Ayush has envisaged the need to integrate ICT over a decade ago. The scope of work undertaken under the ambit of ICT in the Council is wide ranging which includes areas such as literary, fundamental research, medicinal plant-based research, pre-clinical and clinical research, adopting ICT solutions for running administrative, accounting and Human Resource Managementetc., Apart from these the Council operates several public health initiative programs from time to time and ICT tools are diligently utilized for the same. To cater the needs of different areas of work, the Council is striving to create customized applications for the niche areas of RandD and service segments. Some of the key deliverables which are successfully catering to various stakeholders of AYUSH (in general) and Ayurveda in particular are as follows:


  ICT Applications for Literary and Fundamental Research Top


E-Books

As early as a decade ago, the Council has developed e-books of Charaka Samhita and Sushrut amhita with option to read in multiple languages along with key-word search option. Since the launch of the launch of these e-books which are highly appreciated by Ayurveda enthusiasts throughout the globe, as an extension of this work the Council has created a bouquet of e-books in the form of “APTA Digital Library or Ayurveda grantha samuccayah”.[3] Further, the Council has also recently developed two e-books of the Unani system of medicine viz., Al-qanun Fi Al Tibb and Kāmil al-Sināʿah al-Tibbīyah.

AYUSH Manuscripts Advanced Repository (AMAR)

It is a web based electronic repository of Ayurveda, Siddha, Unani, Yoga and Naturopathy, Siddha, Sowa-Rigpa manuscripts. The work is based on the metadata generated in two projects under “Acquisition, Cataloging, Digitization and Publication of Text Book and Manuscripts of Ayush” carried out by CCRAS units from Hyderabad, Bhuvaneshwar, Leh-Ladakh etc., in between the years 2009–2013. The Repository is designed for addition of information from other such works to be undertaken by NIIMH or CCRAS and is hosted on URL: http://niimh.nic.in/amar. The AMAR Portal along with SAHI, e-Medha and RMIS portals were launched on 5th July 2021.[4]

Showcase of Ayurveda Historical Imprints (SAHI) Portal

It is a virtual collection of validated primary evidences of Ayurvedic practice in Indian sub-continent and its spread across the world. The sources of information included in this portal include inscriptional evidences, collection of artefacts (surgical instruments, manufacture of medicine, preparation of food, hospital set up etc.), Archaeo-botanical Information, and any other such sources as per the guidance of experts. URL of the portal is http://niimh.nic.in/sahi

e -Medical Heritage Accession (e-Medha) Catalogue

It is a complete library catalogue of 12631 books uploaded to e-Granthalaya initiative of National informatics Centre. The information is placed under Medical Libraries Cluster as part of Union Catalogue of Government Libraries. The online catalogue is accessible across the world on URL https://eg4.nic.in/MedicalLibraries/OPAC/Default.aspx?LIB_CODE=NCIM.

NAMASTE Portal

It is an AYUSH informatics programme aimed at centralising morbidity statistics from diverse medical systems under the Ministry of AYUSH. CCRAS has taken on the mission of standardising Ayurvedic terminologies in conjunction with all stakeholders and using experience gained from earlier initiatives. The document, titled ‘Standardized Ayurveda Terminologies,’ has been published in ten parts and will be uploaded to the National AYUSH Morbidities and Standardized Terminologies E- Portal (NAMSTE Portal) for widespread distribution. One notable characteristic of the document is that the terms are organized in a tree format, with a major term followed by related sub-terms, allowing for contextual knowledge of all terms with similar contexts. Each phrase has been given both a brief and a long definition. Another distinguishing aspect is the emphasis placed on the phrases’ grammatical accuracy in terms of Sanskrit grammar. The National Ayurveda Morbidity Codes (NAMC) are a key component of this text, and they are also utilized to collect morbidity data through the NAMSTE Portal. The use-cases generated by the implementation of the NAMASTE portal and subsequent real-time use under the Ayush Hospital Management Information System (AHMIS) played a significant role in convincing the World Health Organization to take up the work of standardising Ayurveda, Siddha, and Unani international terminologies and including Ayurveda, Siddha, and Unani morbidity codes under the ICD-11, Traditional Medicine Chapter, Module-2. External medical terminology groups, such as SNOMED-CT, are also interested in preparing translations based on these terminologies. All of these are positive outcomes of a well-executed, pragmatically designed project that was completed with diligence and commitment. On October 17, 2017, Sh. Narendra Modi, India’s Hon’ble Prime Minister, launched the platform.[5],[6],[7],[8],[9]


  Facilitation of Research and Development Work and Human Resource Development Top


Ayush Research Portal

It is a web-based platform for AYUSH research articles was developed in 2011 and is maintained by NIIMH Hyderabad to disseminate the benefits of AYUSH systems around the world. The portal is still operational, and information is updated on a regular basis. Apart from this, the portal played a key role in dissemination of COVID-19 pandemic related research outcomes through a dedicated section entitled “National Repository on AYUSH COVID-19 Clinical and Other RandD Initiatives” in the portal.[10],[11] [https://ayushportal.nic.in/]

Research Management Information System (RMIS)

The CCRAS has initiated a dedicated “Research Management Information System” for offering suggestions/inputs related to planning/designing /protocol related sampling and statistical issues etc. The M.D./M.S and Ph.D scholars and postgraduate teachers engaged in guiding research scholars from Ayurvedic academic institutions recognized by National Commission for Indian System of Medicine (NCISM) may avail the benefits of the Research Management Information System. Guidance is provided in formulating research questions/hypotheses, trial design, setting of objectives, sampling/sample size, etc., selection criteria, investigations required (for diagnosis and assessment), assessment criteria/methods, suggestions on feasibility of interventions identified for study, ethical issues, suggested useful literatures relevant to proposed study, general comments on the synopsis/research plan, and support in data analysis and interpretation. [http://rmis.nic.in]


  Clinical Research Tools Top


Ayur Prakriti Web Portal

Individualized treatment is emphasized in Ayurveda. As a result, the CCRAS has taken on the task of standardizing Prakriti (a major parameter to assess health and disease in individualised form). CCRAS has created a Standardized Prakriti Assessment Scale and an AYUR Prakriti Web Portal to help all Ayurvedic stakeholders reliably analyse the Prakriti (individual constitution).,[12],[13 [http://ccras.res.in/ccras_pas/]

Swasthya Assessment Scale Portal

This scale was created by considering a fairly healthy individual and comparing him to health characteristics narrated in Ayurvedic literature. By taking part in this questionnaire’s assessment of his or her health, the participant gets the essential knowledge to keep an eye on numerous gross indicators of health, as well as a healthy food and lifestyle pattern. The participant also understands that maintaining his health and avoiding diseases is primarily in his control.[14] [http://ccras.res.in/ccras_sas/]

Validation and Reliability Testing of Ayurvedic Diagnostic Tools

The portal deals with “Preparation of standardized diagnostic protocol (s), gadgets/instruments/tool which are aptly integrated with latest Information Technology tools such as Internet of Things (IoT) to aid Ayurveda Clinician in proper diagnosis and assessment of “Rogabala”, “Rogibala” and finally achieve the objective of “anapāyicikitsa”[15] [http://vrtadt.ayushnext.com/]

AYUSH Hospital Information Management System (AHMIS)

A-HMIS is a sophisticated IT platform that allows AYUSH facilities to effectively manage all aspects of health care delivery and patient care. It is the first of its kind citizen-centric service from the Government of India, providing Electronic Health Records and Personal Health Records to recipients of AYUSH Health Services provided by Research Councils, National Institutes, and other associated entities under the Ministry of AYUSH. From the outset of development of this AHMIS application and its implementation till date, CCRAS has played a key role in realizing this vast application developed under the aegis of Ayush Grid, a flagship initiative of Ministry of Ayush. All the clinical units operating under CCRAS are actively utilizing this application and adding the data on real time basis. [https://ehr.ayush.gov.in/ayush/#&panel1-2]


  Administrative Tools Top


E-Office implementation for fully paperless office: The above mentioned initiatives are some of the very fruitful attempts in ICT segment from CCRAS. Apart from these, as a part of the capacity building exercise, the Council has so far trained few of its scientists in Information Technology at CDAC, Pune to ensure smooth development and execution of these ICT initiatives. Further, the Council has also recently initiated works to generate evidence for drug likeness, Absorption, Distribution, Metabolism, Excretion, Safety profile studies, Network pharmacology leads utilizing In-silico-Bioinformatics, Cheminformatics, Multiomics tools[16],[17] in collaboration with experienced institutions in this domain viz., IIT Guwahati, High Performance Computing-Bioinformatics group, CDAC, Pune, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi and other similar institutions. The focus of CCRAS for utilization of ICT tools is in sync with the Ministry of Ayush flagship initiative “Ayush Grid[18],[19]” which further is in sync with the “Digital India and National Digital Health Mission[20]” initiatives. So far, the CCRAS could leverage a great deal of benefit from the current technologies and has prepared ground to embrace such new developments in due course of time. The Council stands for rigor of Ayurvedic time tested temperament and its ability to adopt the latest technologies of the current times with great deal of professionalism and commitment and the outcomes mentioned in this editorial stands testimony of the same.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
  References Top

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Anonymous. ICT in education. https://en.unesco.org/themes/ict-education. Accessed January 2, 2022.  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Anonymous. Goal 4 | Department of Economic and Social Affairs. https://sdgs.un.org/goals/goal4. Accessed January 2, 2022.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
CCRAS_EBOOKS. http://ccras.res.in/ccras_ebooks/. Accessed January 29, 2022.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Minister of Ayush Shri Kiren Rijiju launches five Important Portals on Ayush sector “All Ayush stakeholders to be benefited by these initiatives.” https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1732881. Accessed January 29, 2022.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.
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6.
Khan MN, Naime M, Salam M, Sehar N, Khan MA. A brief introduction of national ayush morbidity and standardized terminologies electronic portal (namaste portal). World J Pharm Res 2020;9:189-93. https://wjpr.net/dashboard/abstract_id/15109. Accessed April 28, 2021.  Back to cited text no. 6
    
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Ministry of AYUSH. Ayurvedic Classification of Diseases. https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1605616. AccessedSeptember 21, 2021.  Back to cited text no. 7
    
8.
Lavaniya VK, Ram TS, Narayanan VR. National AYUSH morbidity and standardized terminology portal: A short appraisal. J Res Ayurvedic Sci 2017;1:217-20. doi:10.5005/jp-journals-10064-0021  Back to cited text no. 8
    
9.
Kumar PNR, Thrigulla SR, Jain AK, Sharma MM, Narayanam S, Pillai GK. Rededicating Three Ancient Healthcare Traditions to Humanity. http://www.ccras.nic.in/sites/default/files/Notices/27022020_ICoSDiTAUS2020.pdf. Accessed April 28, 2021.  Back to cited text no. 9
    
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Sarwal R, Saketh Ram T. AYUSH Research Portal: Matching traditional Indian knowledge with modern needs. Curr Sci 2021;121:747-51. https://ayushportal.nic.in/. Accessed October 2, 2021.  Back to cited text no. 10
    
11.
Narayana A, Padhi MM, Srikanth N, Venkateshwarly B, Rajeshkharan R, Sriniwasulu B, et al. Ayush research portal on Indian systems of medicine, homoeopathy & related sciences research - A need of hur. J Indian Med Herit 2010;40:281-6.   Back to cited text no. 11
    
12.
Singh R, Sarada O, Bharati PL, Srikanth N, Dhiman KS, Vyas N, et al. Development of standardized prakriti assessment tool: An overview of ongoing CCRAS initiatives. J Res Ayurvedic Sci 2017;1:165-208.  Back to cited text no. 12
    
13.
CCRASPAS. http://ccras.res.in/ccras_pas/aboutus. Accessed January 29, 2022.  Back to cited text no. 13
    
14.
SAS. http://ccras.res.in/ccras_sas/aboutus. Accessed January 29, 2022.  Back to cited text no. 14
    
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17.
Koulgi S, Jani V, Uppuladinne VM, Sonavane U, Joshi R, Thrigulla SR, et al. Phytochemicals from AYUSH-64 screened against main protease and spike protein of Omicron variant of SARS-CoV-2 using ensemble docking approach. https://doi.org/10.31219/osf.io/67n3g. Accessed January 29, 2022.  Back to cited text no. 17
    
18.
Ayush Grid, the emerging IT-backbone for AYUSH Sector, to integrate operationally with the National Digital Health Mission. https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1660936. Accessed January 29, 2022.  Back to cited text no. 18
    
19.
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20.
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