New-age signal to save lives...

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By SHUCHISMITA CHAKRABORTY
  • Published 15.07.13
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A smartphone application could be your lifesaver in a medical emergency, with some help from a premier health hub.

All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Patna, has developed a cellphone application — Sankat Sanket — to help people in medical emergency.

In an emergency, one would be able to use the app to send an SOS to the hospital and avail of the best medical help.

Explaining the way in which the app would work, AIIMS, Patna director G.K. Singh said: “People would be able to download the app from the hospital website www.aiimspatna.org, where a link would be provided. One would be able to download the app on a smartphone.”

The app would have options such as “I am in danger”, “I need help”, “Pain in the chest”, and “Had an attack”. When a person in distress selects such an option, a message would be sent to the hospital.

Officials of AIIMS-Patna would immediately call up the message sender.

They would send an ambulance if needed. If the person who has sent the message loses consciousness and cannot answer the call, the hospital would also send an ambulance. (See graphic)

The app would be of immense help in case of an accident. The emergency programme has been so developed that if someone drops a phone on the road, it would send a message to the hospital that the person has met with an accident. Official of AIIMS-Patna would call on the cellphone concerned. If the call is not answered, the hospital would send an ambulance.

As most smartphones are equipped with global positioning system (GPS) software, the app would use it to locate the accident victim.

“The app would be uploaded on our website as soon it is ready. People can download and benefit from it,” said director Singh.

He added that it would take three months to make the application, developed by Noida-based Netcellence Technologies, functional.

“At present, we do not have ambulances. So we cannot start the facility though the application is ready,” said Singh. The hospital would acquire two ambulances next month. Providing ambulance services to a critical care patient is the basic what a hospital can do.

“We are also contemplating to avail of the services of the state-sun 108 ambulances,” said the hospital director.

“If our ambulances are busy, we would provide all the information of the person caught in an emergency to one of the state ambulances and they can help him or her.”

Singh said Sankat Sanket was the first-of-its-kind app in the country.

“AIIMS-Delhi does not have such a facility. I also do not know if any private hospital in the country offers such a facility,” he said, adding that the unique app would revolutionise service providing.

Cellphone apps for medical emergencies are no rarity though.

In US, iWrecked — developed by Texas-based Vurgood Applications and priced at $1 — is very popular. It can help drivers call emergency numbers after an accident, contact the nearest taxi or towing centre and provide details of the accident. It can be downloaded on a smartphone.

Doctors praised the app that, they believe, can save lives.

“In emergencies or accidents, people need immediate medical attention. The app would help people alert emergency services immediately,” said Sanjeev Kumar, a cardiothoracic surgeon at AIIMS-Patna.