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HelpAge India, a non-governmental organisation addressing the needs of vulnerable elders, today announced the launch of another Mobile Healthcare Unit (MHU) in Pune’s Shirwal industrial area, with financial support from TE Connectivity, a Bengaluru-based tech company.
“The currently operating MHU in the Pune-Shirwal region caters to 13 villages and 17,000 elders every year since 2018, approximating to over 50,000 treatments in total, mostly workers or who themselves work in old age to support their families. With the second MHU vehicle also supported by TE Connectivity, HelpAge will cover an additional 23 villages and double the number of treatments,” said Rohit Prasad, CEO, HelpAge India. “The primary healthcare centre is at times situated far away from homes and industrial areas, making it difficult for elderly factory workers and other non-working senior citizens to access it. The new MHU van, equipped with doctors, nurses, and other medical staff, will bridge this gap by providing doorstep healthcare support to vulnerable elders. We are grateful to TE Connectivity for its continuous support to our healthcare programme supporting needy sections of community.”
HelpAge runs Asia’s largest mobile healthcare programme. With these additions, the total strength of HelpAge India’s MHU network throughout the country is now 160. Every year, the MHUs provide medical relief and treatment to more than 4 lakh disadvantaged elders and their communities. The new fleet of MHUs would serve an additional 23 new sites, taking the total number of locations served to over 2100 in 22 states.
TE Connectivity has been supporting an MHU operated by HelpAge since 2018, providing support to elder communities in the Shirwal-Pune area and the surrounding areas. This is the second MHU that is being supported by the company. TE has also been supporting various healthcare initiatives of HelpAge in Bengaluru since 2015.
HelpAge’s MHU programme has been operating and expanding since 1982. Their frontline workers worked hard throughout the pandemic, through the multiple lockdowns, during which access to medical shops became difficult for elders, most of whom were suffering from chronic conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, arthritis, and blood pressure.
HelpAge India’s mobile healthcare programme saves poor elders from long queues at hospitals, along with transportation and medicine costs. It, with the support from partners like TE Connectivity, provides free medication on a weekly basis. Beneficiaries are provided health cards and records of their treatment are maintained.
HelpAge, through these MHUs, provides not just free treatment and medicine but also basic diagnostics, home visits by doctors (in the case of bedridden patients), and counselling for patients, the elderly, family members, and caretakers.