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Empowering rural healthcare: HealthCube portable diagnostic devices revolutionising health outcomes in India

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Empowering rural healthcare: HealthCube portable diagnostic devices revolutionising health outcomes in India

Runam Mehta, CEO, HealthCube talks about her company’s reach in rural India and how their portable diagnostic devices are revolutionising health outcomes in India

In recent years, India has achieved significant healthcare advancements, yet numerous challenges persist, particularly in semi-urban and rural regions. Limited access to medical facilities, skilled healthcare staff, and diagnostics prevail in vast rural and mountainous areas. This is where technology, exemplified by health-tech solutions like POC diagnostics come to play! Made-in-India solutions like HealthCube’s devices are revolutionising millions of lives, providing consistent, high-quality diagnostic support, and empowering communities for better well-being. Further, HealthCube has crossed the boundaries of rural India to support the underprivileged population of Kenya, where they worked with Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to support diagnostic services in remote parts of the country through ten clinics. The company executed a project to screen the Indo-Tibetan population for their vitals and basic biochemical parameters at the behest of His Holiness, The Dalai Lama.

HealthCube device usability benefits

HealthCube has developed smart and portable diagnostic tools that combine smart diagnostics with AI to transform the speed and accuracy of diagnostic efforts. Their devices come with an in-built power bank to ensure suitability for field health camps, door-to-door screening, and deployment in rural or tribal areas with limited or no electricity supply. Weighing less than 5 pounds, the devices are compact enough to be carried in a backpack, enabling deployment in any part of the country. Through these, it is now possible to provide efficient and economical healthcare services in remote locations.

HealthCube devices are easy to use and can be operated by anyone with minimal training. Thus, they also do away with the compulsion of having only certified and extensively trained operators to use the devices. Patients get screened on the HealthCube platform with the aid of step-by-step visual instructions. A small prick of the finger is adequate to carry out several blood tests. As the entire data generation, recording, and sharing of data is done automatically, there is no risk of human errors in the analysis and generation of diagnostic results. HealthCube devices have already benefited more than a million Indians and carried out over 2.5 million tests in more than 30 diagnostic areas on a single platform. The company offers CE Certified and CDSCO approved medical devices such as HealthCube XL, HealthCube SE, HC Biochem, and Agewell Plus.

HealthCube solutions for the COVID-19 pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic proved to be the biggest challenge faced by the modern healthcare systems, and the risk of contagion necessitated doorstep and remote access to healthcare and diagnostic services. To address this need, HealthCube introduced COVID-19 risk management solution designed to indicate the risk of infection and assess its severity. The solution aimed at minimizing the risk exposure to people at their workplace, and instilling confidence among the employees who returned to work post the lockdowns. Over 20,000 screenings were done at different locations, and the solution has now emerged as a key enabler for organizations to reboot employee safety and wellness in uncertain times.

HealthCube deployments across India

As a prominent diagnostic device innovator, HealthCube has been working in collaboration with various state governments, local authorities, corporate houses, NGOs, and other stakeholders in the arena of healthcare and diagnostics. The company has executed several projects in the last few years with significant positive impact on the quality of care and diagnostic access available to the rural masses. These include:

Anemia Mukt Bharat

Launched as a part of POSHAN Abhiyaan, a national nutritional strategy set by NITI Aayog in March 2018, Anaemia Mukt Bharat (Anaemia-free India) aims to reduce the prevalence of anaemia by 3 percentage points each year among children, adolescents, and women in the age group of (15-49 years). Conventionally, the state governments have been relying on Sahli’s Method or ‘Colour Scale Method’ to measure haemoglobin. The tests require extensively trained technicians and the results are manually recorded which makes it a time-consuming process.

HealthCube collaborated with the district administration of Mahabubnagar to screen children with over 250 schools across the district. The project made a great impact since it enabled real-time access to data and the easy-to-manage devices provided rapid results. More than 100,000 tests were performed as a part of the project in just 25 working days, and over 65,000 students were screened.

Vodafone Idea CSR project

HealthCube collaborated with Vodafone Idea on a CSR project named “Village Social Entrepreneurs in Healthcare.” Their aim was to train frontline health workers using HealthCube’s digital diagnostic devices, enabling them to offer rapid mobile diagnostic screening services and generate income. This ongoing project has been active for over two years across 20 districts in states including Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, and more. The initiative has deployed 150 HealthCube systems, registered over 2.5 lakh beneficiaries, conducted 3.2 lakh screening tests, and created around half a million Patient Health Records. Notably, beneficiaries now willingly seek screenings at nearby public health centers due to a positive change in mindset prompted by the project.

Nand and Jeet Khemka Foundation project

Another highly impactful project carried out by HealthCube has been in association with the Nand and Jeet Khemka Foundation. The two organisations worked collaboratively in Kahalgaon, Pirpainti, and Shahkund areas of Bhagalpur district of Bihar, an area that has a higher Maternal Mortality Rate (MMR) than the average MMR in India. The team at Project Khemka Rameshwar Lal or AIPAD (Action to Improve Public Scheme Access and Delivery) had found that the areas covered had no facilities for screening and early detection of high-risk pregnancies, and that was the main reason behind the high MMR.

As a part of the remedial actions, Auxiliary nurse-midwives (ANMs) were enabled to conduct door-to-door screening using HealthCube devices, and the data recorded was shared with the doctors in their villages. This enabled testing of 10,748 women using 74 HealthCube ecosystems, and timely identification of risks enabled the start of care pathways, on-time consultation, and treatment, weeks ahead of the usual average. As a result, many lives were saved.

HealthCube deployments in remote areas

Recently, 300 advanced HealthCube XL devices were deployed at health centres across 13 districts of the Himalayan state of Uttarakhand. These deployments ensured year-long access to diagnostic services in these districts which so far had only seasonal access to pathology diagnostic support as they remained mostly cut off during the winters.

HealthCube also partnered with KIOSk/Health ATM, an organization that uses HC devices as core technology. These devices are compatible with the e-Sanjeevani telemedicine platform as well as Mobile OPD vans in the state of Punjab.

Conclusion

HealthCube’s successful deployment of its devices highlights their transformative impact on rural healthcare in India. These advanced point-of-care diagnostics have addressed issues from pandemic prevention to anemia identification and maternal mortality rate reduction. These portable solutions not only bridge the gap in lab professionals and diagnostic lab coverage in remote areas but also enhance affordability, accuracy, and convenience in healthcare. This marks just the start of a broader transformation led by brands like HealthCube, promising more widespread adoption of such devices not only in India but globally.

 

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