How a portal saved 2,000 lives by connecting patients with dialysis centres

Under Mumbai municipal commissioner’s initiative Project Victory, IIT- B set up dashboard during lockdown 2020

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Geetanjali Minhas | June 22, 2021 | Mumbai


#Covid-19   #pandemic   #dialysis   #healthcare   #BMC   #MCGM   #Iqbal Singh Chahal   #technology   #IIT Bombay  


As the city of Mumbai went into the lockdown in March 2020, those who were on permanent dialysis and caught Covid infection or suspected to have been infected were badly in need of dialysis treatment.
At the same time a large number of patients who were already in dialysis centres started contracting infection, leading to the closure of many centres. This led to more fear and panic among patients, as a many Covid positive patients did not know where to go for dialysis treatment, and slots for treatment too were also not available at these centres.
 
The BMC, with the help of the IIT Bombay and Apex Kidney Foundation, then started facilities across the city for such patients.
 
“Last year in May 2020, it came to our knowledge at MCGM that at least 10,000 citizens in Mumbai were undergoing dialysis on a permanent basis. Therefore, within 12 days of my joining as municipal commissioner, MCGM, on a war-footing a portal, coviddialysis.in, was developed under Project Victory with the help of IIT Bombay and Apex Kidney Foundation, Mumbai, to create a world-class state-of-the-art unique facility for dialysis of Covid positive and suspected Covid patients in auto-pilot mode,” said Iqbal Singh Chahal.
 
He also said that 75 machines were deployed at various public hospitals and 35 machines were installed in private hospitals. Twenty-three dialysis centres were created for Covid-positive patients. Two centres were set up for dialysis patients who were Covid suspects. Lives of hundreds of patients who were on permanent dialysis were saved during Covid.
 
The BMC has released a video that illustrates how till May 2021 more than 2,000 Covid-positive and Covid suspected patients on permanent dialysis benefitted from this project leading to zero deaths since this facility started on May 20, 2020.
 
Dr Vishwanath Billa of Apex Kidney Foundation said, “Each day we had new dialysis patients getting infected with Covid and the city did not have any ready available slots in suitable facility. The municipal commissioner made a huge effort in classifying centres as Covid positive, Covid suspect and Covid negative. We had the patients on one side; we had solution in the form of facilities on other side. What was missing was connectivity. For this we approached IIT Bombay and they helped us develop a dashboard which eventually came to be called ‘Project Victory’.
 
“This dashboard helped identify every dialysis patient or patient who was also Covid positive across the city and centres with readily available information on Covid positive slots in public and private sector hospitals across the city. This information was available on the dashboard. The coordinator only had to link the patient to the facility and within a record period of 48 hours virtually 97%of these patients could receive their slot. No deaths happened due to delay or denial of dialysis treatment. Within one week, IIT Bombay also created a portal to bring together nephrologist, patients, MCGM and hospitals for quick resolutions and covidialysis.in was launched.”
 
Dr Kalpana Mehta of Mumbai Nephrology Group says, “Our success rate is comparable to one of the best in the world. During this period our job was to be provide info to the Project Victory website on daily available slots and accept patients sent to us.”
 
According to the BMC, 1,418 patients had benefitted from the portal till December 31, 2020 and not a single patient has died due to lack of dialysis since inception of this portal.

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