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HealthCare atHome CEO Vivek Srivastava.
HealthCare atHome CEO Vivek Srivastava.

HealthCare atHome’s click moment: Home ICUs

Understanding the vacuum for an organized ICU set-up provider, we decided to launch ICU atHome, says HealthCare atHome CEO Vivek Srivastava

When we launched HealthCare atHome, our focus was on providing short nursing visits for dressing and injections at home. As a business development exercise, we would meet doctors to explain our concept.

One fine day, during a meeting, one doctor told us that there is a patient who is on end-of-life care and wants to breathe her last at home. The patient was in the intensive care unit (ICU) and shifting to her home meant shifting all the equipment. Complicating the situation, we did not have a 24-hour care system and our nurses were not hired with the mandate of staying in the patient’s home for 12/24 hours. Setting up an ICU at home was not the plan we had envisioned. However, citing the nobility of the cause, it was not difficult to bring everyone on board.

Our nurses agreed to do four- to six-hour shifts and we served the patient at her home for a few weeks before she left for her heavenly abode. In India, the patient-to-bed ratio (one bed per thousand people) is fairly low in comparison to global standards (greater than three). The situation is even more acute in case of hospital ICU beds, which are the first to run out of capacity (there is one bed for every 70 patients).

The situation leaves hospitals with no option but to deny treatment to patients who actually need to be in the ICU.

The situation is more precarious in small cities and towns where many hospitals have no ICU infrastructure.

Understanding the vacuum for an organized ICU set-up, we decided to launch ICU atHome. There has been no looking back after that. Patients can access ICU atHome services at a cost which is about 60% cheaper than what they would spend in a hospital, while maintaining equivalent, if not better, clinical outcomes.

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