At a time when India is grappling with a massive surge in coronavirus infections, an overburdened healthcare system, and shortage of essential medical supplies and equipment, scores of start-ups are working round the clock to tackle some of the problems.
Hyderabad-based StanPlus Technologies is offering 24×7 on-demand emergency response and medical assistance to people. The start-up is helping Covid-19 patients and suspected patients with consultations, arranging for beds, connecting them with plasma donors and providing transportation to hospitals through its network of more than 3,400 ambulances.
To cater to more patients pan-India, it has also partnered with top hospitals and other service providers covering lab tests and medicine delivery. It is also arranging air ambulance transfers from one part of the country to another. StanPlus has supported more than 7,000 Covid-affected people.
“We are trying our best to mitigate the major issues faced by industry on ground, which include the scarce availability of advanced life support ambulances (ALS) and trained paramedics. We find that our ambulances are being occupied for longer periods to support critical patients, due to the uncertainty involved in bed and oxygen availability at hospitals,” founder and CEO Prabhdeep Singh told FE.
Bangalore-based firm Predible is helping large corporate hospitals and standalone diagnostic labs to conduct chest CT imaging, a critical determinant used to diagnose and treat Covid-19 patients. The firm has devised a product called LungIQ, which enables radiologists to instantly report Covid-19 chest CTs using artificial intelligence. Upon uploading a chest CT scan, the software automatically generates a report with the CT severity scoring according to the latest guidelines. The generated report is then reviewed and signed off on by the reporting radiologist.
The start-up has processed over 80,000 CT studies so far. “We are seeing a huge backlog of studies at hospital sites, with reports delayed by multiple days. The overall workflow helps save time and cater to the huge burden of studies on a daily basis,” CEO Suthirth Vaidya said.
A clutch of mid-sized start-ups in Gurgaon have launched ‘Mission Oxygen’, which aims at mitigating the shortage of oxygen supplies in Delhi-NCR hospitals by importing around 1,000-1,200 oxygen concentrators. The start-up founders have raised `8.5 crore through crowdfunding platform Ketto and have already procured 500 concentrators from China, which will be made available in hospitals by Wednesday.
Zomato has entered into a similar partnership with Delhivery to procure oxygen concentrators.
Less than a year old, logistics start-up Zipaworld is helping pharmaceutical and medical product companies deliver Covid-related medicines and other supplies, including testing kits and apparatus, across India, said Dr Ambrish Kumar, founder of Zipaworld and group CEO, AAA2 Innovate. The company, which manages air and road cargo movement, fulfils the entire express delivery and distribution process on the back of its own services and partnership with subsidiaries.
Noida-headquartered Vehant Technologies has developed a thermal screening camera that can detect the temperature of people in real time. The product also has a visual camera facility that can capture if a person is wearing a mask and adhering to social distancing.
The company, which counts corporate offices including IOCL and public establishments as its clients, has received an order from RailTel to supply 100 units of the product, FebriEye, CEO and co-founder Kapil Badreja said. The firm is installing the cameras in New Delhi, Nizamuddin and Prayagraj stations in the next two to three weeks.
Another start-up, MyHealthcare, has devised an app that enables Covid-19 patients under home isolation to virtually connect with doctors and seek medical assistance. The app has built-in trackers for alerts if a patient’s vitals are beyond the permissible range. Patients can also order medicines on the app and get them delivered at home.