Karnataka govt launches 'Apthamitra' helpline and app to fight coronavirus
Aimed at empowering people in its fight against coronavirus, the Karnataka government on Wednesday launched 'Apthamitra' helpline with an exclusive toll-free number and a mobile app, aimed at providing required medical advice and guidance for those in need.
The helpline and app were launched by Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa in the presence of senior ministers and officials of the department.
"If anyone has symptoms of coronavirus, they can call the helpline from their home, get medical advice or assistance, and get their doubts cleared. Based on the symptoms, an expert team of doctors will advice on what to do next," the chief minister said.
According to the department, the 'Apthamitra' helpline will work from 8 AM to 8 PM, with helpline centres at six locations — Bengaluru (four centres), Mysore, and Mangalore (Bantwal) — with a total of 300 seat capacity are being set up.
It's a two-tier system where the first tier is manned by AYUSH, nursing, or pharma final year volunteer students. The second tier is manned by MBBS, integrated medicine, or AYUSH volunteer doctors connecting from their respective locations for risk assessment, counselling, telemedicine and referral for testing, and treatment, it added.
The helpline '14410' will cover residents in all parts of the state. While the 'Apthamitra' app is for those with a smartphone to seek advise for telemedicine from doctors directly.
The purpose of this initiative is to reach out to people, especially those staying in corona hotspot areas, identify those having Influenza-Like Illness (ILI), Severe Acute Respiratory Infection (SARS), coronavirus like symptoms, or having a high risk of getting infected, the state health department said.
It intends to identify people with low-risk, but having some symptoms similar to those of coronavirus, and provide them telemedicine support with OTC medicines, and counsel them for self-quarantine.
It also aims to follow-up all low-risk cases till they get fully cured, along with assessing those having medium to high risk of coronavirus, and get them to fever clinics or COVID-19 screening centres for testing and treatment, the department said in a release.
The platform intends to analyse the incidence of ILI, inform decisions for graded relaxation of the lockdown to resume economic activities in areas with a low prevalence of the symptoms, while stepping up containment measures in hotspots, clusters, and disease break-out areas, it said.
This entire solution is owned by the Health and Family Welfare Department and the State Disaster Management Authority. The system works under the aegis of NASSCOM, Bengaluru.
The digital mobile app and the backend CRM system have been developed by Infosys BPM (the subsidiary of Infosys Ltd), the release said.
Further Infosys BPM and Hinduja Global Solutions have worked together to design, build, and execute the multi-channel customer contact solution with the contact centre infra being provided by Infosys, HGS, Concentrix, MPhasis, and HCL as partners in the fight against coronavirus, it added.