A few weeks back I was casually browsing through Indiblogger, when I came across the contest titled “The Idea Caravan”. The contest was all about how an idea can change your life. Last December Franklin Templeton Investments partnered with TEDxGateway Mumbai to bring forward a few people who shared their fascinating stories of innovation.
After going through a few inspiring videos on Ftideacaravan, I stopped at Myshkin Ingawale’s presentation where he talked about TouchHB, a substitute to a $10,000 device which can be used by the nurses or Asha workers in rural parts of the country to detect anemia. This, to be honest, is a remarkable achievement in the world of healthcare, given so many people die of anemia every year.
In the past, I have often wandered through online shopping sites like Amazon and eBay searching for a portable non-invasive blood testing device which could check the hemoglobin level of my anemic wife. Well, I haven’t found anything which is remotely affordable or even available in India till I stumbled upon this video by Myshkin.
One of the major problems of an anemia patient is that the person has relatively lower amount of blood in his / her body. So, you can monitor anemia level only after a certain period as every time you withdraw blood from the person, the body takes that much more time to regenerate the missing volume. Again, to expedite the process you need to maintain a good iron rich diet daily and follow that over a period of time.
When I came across TouchHB, I found that it ticks most of the boxes.
- It costs a lot less than any other devices to test anemia. Many people who otherwise could not have even dreamt of periodic checks because of price, can make use of it
- The non-invasive characteristic of the device would be a blessing to people fearing pricks and blood loss
- Portability would help in the distribution of the device to health workers, government health centers and can also be made available to end users and general consumers. It would also help in reaching the remotest parts of the country.
- Battery operated so, electricity not required
While thinking aloud, I wondered that if government can own the project providing all the necessary resources to Biosense, the organization behind TouchHB, we can see something in the lines of Aakash Tablet, an initiative by the people in power to eradicate deaths due to anemia.
Humans, by default, are mostly laid back unless they are compelled to act in different situations. Most of us like to remain in our own little world and die in it contributing nothing to the society. I myself, belong to the same category of mellow people I mentioned. However, for the time being, it would at least be worth a cent if we can promote the likes of Myshkin who are working for greater good and striving to bring a ray of hope to the lives of so many people.