Hyderabad: Grace Cancer Foundation – a non-profit working for the early detection of cancer, has created a unique concept – A Mobile COVID-19 ICU(MCICU). The MCICU is an ICU that is created by a bus. The Mobile COVID ICU was formally flagged off by the Hon’ble Health Minister Etela Rajender, Dr.C.Laxmareddy MLA in the presence of Dr. Chinnababu Sunkavalli, CEO, Grace Cancer Foundation, Rajiv Lal, and a host of other dignitaries.
The number of COVID 19 cases in India has crossed the 100,000 mark. The return of migrants coupled with the gradual re-opening post lockdown could lead to a volatile situation. The expected need of ICUs and ventilator equipped beds could be as high as 1,00,000, while the current capacity is around 15,000. Even these are unevenly spread with a large concentration in Metros and state capitals. The capacity of the state governments is stretched and their ability to augment capacity is severely limited.
The MCICU aims to save precious lives as it takes advanced critical care to mofussil and rural areas where such facilities are lacking. The bus based ventilator equipped ICU is mobile and can be positioned in areas of the greatest need. It has state-of-the-art facilities for Ventilators, Imaging, Tele Radiology, e-ICU, Ultrasound, AI Based Risk Stratification and Contactless Sample Collection. The program supplements the government capacity for testing and awareness building. Itis one step ahead of mobile testing as it moves to therapeutic care as well. It can perhaps be a model for rapid scaling should that be needed.
This unique initiative is supported by Liberty General Insurance and NATCO Pharma. IIIT is the data and technology partner in the program.
Roopam Asthana, CEO and Whole Time Director, Liberty General Insurance Ltd. “Liberty General Insurance is very happy to support the setup of a mobile ICU unit by Grace Foundation. We are convinced that this effort will provide the much needed medical support to our communities which do not have adequate facilities in times of the current crises as well as post that.”
“In the current scenario there is a great need to supplements the efforts of the Governments to combat the disease spread effectively. Innovative solutions that are accessible and affordable and the involvement of NGOs can help mitigate the burden. Grace Cancer Foundation is launching India’s first state-of-the-art, Mobile COVID ICU, to reach modern care in remote areas and stem the disease spread, says Dr Chinnababu Sunkavalli.
Rajeev, Vice Chairman & CEO, NATCO said, “We have always been a firm believer that healthcare and availability of medicines is a fundamental human right. Keeping in line with our philosophy, we are constantly striving to bring affordable medicines to people at large. With the looming COVID-19 crisis, NATCO is very glad to support Grace Foundation with their timely introduction of mobile ICU clinics that targets to reach the needy in remote areas”
The MCICU brings in a plethora of advantages in an unprecedented situation like this. It will increase the capacity of ventilators where the shortage is likely to be critical, especially in the district and block level hospitals. Easy mobility enhances the usage potential of the ventilators in a hyper local environment. The cost of building the unit is up to 50% lower than doing the same in a
hospital context. It can be expeditiously assembled and made functional in less than ten days. The MCICU renders service with support from volunteers. Medical personnel committed to the cause come forward, which in turn further reduces the cost of care. It also addresses the critical shortage of intensivists in district and block level hospitals.
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