LEHS|WISH has been working at the frontlines of the Coronavirus pandemic since it was first announced in India. India, a country of more than 1.3 billion people was caught off-guard, and the government and health officials found themselves unprepared to handle the massive problem arising from the pandemic. LEHS|WISH immediately swung into action for controlling this infectious disease. Given the diversity of the country, with socio-economic inequality, it has been extremely crucial to address the issues arising at each level to put up a decent fight against the disease. While the central and state governments were toiling hard to put their best efforts, it was critical that we participate in the fight against COVID-19.
More than sixty-five percent of India’s population lives in rural areas and hence a robust strategy to prevent and reduce community transmission becomes the need of the hour. LEHS|WISH, with its presence in five states, stepped up by supporting the containment strategy as per the guidelines of the Government of India and consciously leveraged digital technology in its roll-out plan, wherever relevant.
LEHS|WISH went that extra mile to fight this disease and lessen its impact. With the efforts of our scientists and medical fraternity, Corona vaccine is available for immunization of the people. And as always, LEHS|WISH is committed to the cause of ensuring that people receive the due vaccination and are safe from this deadly disease.
Since early 2020, LEHS|WISH has been supporting the governments of Assam, Delhi, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh in their fight against COVID-19 through advisory, technical services, equipment, and capacity building. Following is a snapshot of LEHS|WISH interventions and activities in 2020:
Reached 8.43 million citizens through OPD consults (including telemedicine) and community level surveys in five states. Among these, 1.04 million people with Influenza Like Illness (ILI) symptoms were treated as per Government of India guidelines.
Provided support in conducting government mandated tele-consultations via eSanjeevani. It proved invaluable in handling home isolated COVID-19 cases virtually. Over 1.09 million consultations were conducted as of 23 April 2021 in five states.
Launched an innovative initiative – tele-calling for pregnant women in the last month of their pregnancy. It helped in restoring Maternal and Chile Health (MCH) services during the pandemic.
Supporting state governments in their Vaccination-Drive to vaccinate maximum number of people in minimum number of days.
12,30,000 (1.23 million) people reached out through IEC and BCC activities.
Initiated a solar mediated Dedicated COVID-19 Health Centre (DCHC) in Rajasthan in collaboration with the state government.
Trained HCPs in Assam across Health and Wellness Centers (HCWs) and Tea Estate Smart Hospitals, and helped in creating Isolation Wards in these hospitals. Introduced PoCDs like Dozee and Enject, AINA and TrueNat. Forty COVID Sakha and Sakhi volunteers trained to sensitize 30,000 people on COVID Appropriate Behavior (CAB) in thirteen Tea Estates.
Trained over 25,000 Healthcare Providers (HCPs) on Government of India and state specific COVID 19 guidelines and protocols via LEHS|WISH online training platform – Wish2Learn with virtual reality component. Training also included topics, such as pediatric care, geriatric care, general care, home based care, referral, orientation and hands-on training on the use of life saving devices.
Distributed more than 0.9 million Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) kits along with other logistics to HCPs across five states.
Response during COVID-19 Second Wave
In India, the second wave of the pandemic, fueled by novel coronavirus mutants, is causing more havoc than its previous variant. Since April 2021, for several week in a row, India witnessed three to four lakh fresh cases each day, and between 3000-4000 deaths. The situation has worsened further with rise in the number of Black Fungus, White Fungus and Yellow Fungus cases. All these together have adversely affected the Indian healthcare system, both public and private, and caused acute shortage of medical supplies of Oxygen, hospital beds, medicines, and healthcare providers. India also needs to gear up for bracing the third wave of COVID-19, which is likely to affect children and rural population the most.
To mitigate the devastation caused by the second wave since April 2021, LEHS|WISH is optimally utilizing available government resources in COVID-Care Centers (CCC) and Dedicated COVID Health Centers (DCHC) wherever available, and supplementing them with amenities such as oxygen, Isolation Wards, proper nutrition and regular vital checks that are usually missing in most of the health facilities. LEHS|WISH’s current relief operations to curb the surge are as follows:
Facilitating Set-up of COVID Care Centres (CCCs):
LEHS|WISH is facilitating the set-up of 30 COVID Care Centers (10, 20, 50 and 100 bed facilities) across five States both directly, and through partners. The approval for setting-up fourteen CCCs has been received, while funding is available for half of them. These centres will be established within PHCs (urban and rural), CHCs, District Hospitals, Super Speciality Hospitals, Tertiary Care Hospitals (both public and private), Tea-garden Smart Hospitals, government school buildings, Nursing Colleges, etc. COVID-Relief activities in the states include the following:
Delhi-NCR: LEHS|WISH has provided lifesaving equipment and amenities to the Government of Delhi on a large scale for distribution at various government health facilities. It has been supporting Plasma Therapy to COVID-19 patients at the Department of Transfusion Medicine at SSPH & PGTI, Noida. It has distributed life-saving oxygen concentrators and PPE equipment to Holy Family Charitable Hospital and have set-up a CCC there. LEHS|WISH is providing life-saving equipment and setting up oxygen plants in several leading hospitals, such as Devki Devi Charitable Max Hospital, Saket, and it is in the process of establishing/supporting a Dedicated COVID Hospital (DCH) in Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Government Hospital, and one in Rohini. This is in addition to the ongoing primary healthcare services across all the Mohalla Clinics and vaccination program in the designated centers.
Madhya Pradesh: LEHS|WISH has launched two of the three 20-bed CCCs in Bhopal, and the third one is in progress in Jabalpur. It is supporting these CCCs with human resources/logistics and infrastructure. LEHS|WISH is also providing piped oxygen facility, CCCs, medical equipment and HR support to the MP Police, 24th Battalion under its ‘Save the Saviour’ initiative. In addition, mental health services and Yoga programs are ongoing across the state through telemedicine and online consultations.
Haryana: In Gurugram, LEHS|WISH is mobilizing Self-Help-Groups (SHGs) and equipping them with Oxygen tanks, Thermal guns, Pulse oximeters, PPE kits, etc. They are also being trained on sanitization and patient-care protocols. LEHS|WISH is also setting up a 30-bed Covid Care Centre in the Community Centre in Badshapur village, Gurugram. This CCC is equipped with Oxygen tanks, Thermal guns, Pulse oximeters, PPE kits, etc.
Rajasthan: LEHS|WISH is setting-up two CCCs in Alwar; and one each in rural areas of Sawai Madhopur, Dungarpur, Rajsamand, Baran and Jaipur/urban, pending financial investments. This is in addition to its ongoing primary healthcare services in the rural and urban PHCs, along with COVID-vaccination drive for the local population.
Uttar Pradesh: LEHS|WISH has supplied PPE kits to public-health facilities in peri-urban areas in Shravasti District; and is setting up CCCs in Noida, while also supporting charitable hospitals with the supply of medical equipment and amenities including Oxygen Concentrators (5 Liters), FFP3, N95, PPE Kits, Thermo guns, Oximeters etc.
Assam: LEHS|WISH is providing oxygen concentrators, PPE kits and other medical equipment to National Health Mission, Assam, for select public hospitals. Tele-consultations are being provided under the government’s ‘Sampark’ initiative. LEHS|WISH is planning to set up a 200-bed CCC in Guwahati and additional 50-bed and 10-bed CCCs in over fifteen Tea Garden hospitals in Udalgiri and Tinsukia, in close coordination with district administration. LEHS|WISH engaged local Assamese celebrities in an SMS campaign with messaging to the local population on self-care, social distancing, masking, and vaccination. To mitigate the impact of the third wave, which is expected to affect children and rural population, LEHS|WISH is partnering with Assam government to set up a 400-bed temporary CCC, which will cater to the whole north-east region.
Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu: LEHS|WISH has partnered with Nanavati hospital in Mumbai, and Vijaya Group of Hospitals in Chennai for the provision of life-saving medical supplies.
Capacity-building of healthcare providers (HCP) on COVID-management, home isolation, sanitation practices, COVID-vaccine promotion, etc. has been ongoing since last year through Wish2Learn platform.