Coronavirus in Mumbai: BMC’s Project Maitri to check resurgence

Mumbai: In a bid to track the health status of Covid-9 patients under home quarantine and to prevent resurgence or "second wave" of cases in the city, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has undertaken a home isolation program, ‘Project Maitri’, along with Shishir Joshi-led NGO 'Project Mumbai' and Portea Healthcare.

The initiative first started its pilot program on July 9, 2020, and during which it managed to get in touch with 21,250 patients who were under home quarantine routine after testing positive. It was found that 14,800 patients had successfully completed their treatment and recovered. Portea Healthcare is the implementation partner for this project, BMC officials informed.

Iqbal Singh Chahal, Municipal Commissioner, said, "BMC has been relentlessly ensuring Covid care reaches everyone - To those in dedicated Covid hospitals / institutional isolations and also to those under home quarantine. The initiative --'Project Maitri' in partnership with NGO ‘Project Mumbai’ will help us in this endeavour along with implementation partner ‘Portea Healthcare’. The learning and insights from this initiative over the next 3 months will be shared with other cities and district administrations."

Another senior BMC official said, "Even as the recovery rate is rising, our duty does not end there. We still do not know if the infection can relapse, or whether there will be a second wave. There is a fear of cases resurging and the second wave across the globe and we do not want to slow down out efforts amid all this. So far we are good, the number of active cases is low but we will intensify the fight to eradicate it completely. The initiative will help us track the health status of those who were out of our reach and under the home quarantine. We will be following up with such patients and record their health status with the help of NGO 'Project Mumbai."

"Project Mumbai, as a model of public-private people partnership, strongly believes that at this juncture, when the city is collectively waging a war against Covid-19, a solution such as this will help benefit the masses. Positive change remains our objective," said Shishir Joshi, founder and CEO of Project Mumbai.

Meanwhile, Meena Ganesh, Managing Director of Portea Healthcare, said, "We are privileged to partner with MCGM and Project Mumbai in managing home isolated Covid positive patients in Mumbai through our dedicated team along with the best of technology and protocol."

Protocol under Project Maitri

1. A dedicated remote monitoring setup consisting of trained healthcare workers will call ‘home isolated patients’ under the program and maintain regular follow up of health status of the patients and their family members.

2. The patients and family members are also offered the facility to speak to an emotional wellness expert and mental health counsellors if they feel stressed or anxious on the number: 1800-102-4040

3. The healthcare workers will also follow-up with patients discharged from hospitals but recommended home isolation for 7 more days.

4. The remote monitoring setup has been working in close coordination with all the ward level control rooms and proactively informing them about patients who have started developing symptoms and escalating need for hospitals beds/ambulances if required for the patients. There will be a focus on high-risk patients who have comorbidities or are aged above 55.

5. This setup will complement the work done by the ward level control room, thereby reducing their workload and freeing up their capacity to focus more on bed management, patient contact tracing and on monsoon activities.

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