“While most of us sat at home, ZHL’s warriors were out there – risking their lives to save others”
-Mr. Amitabh Jaipuria ( MD & CEO, ZIQITZA )
The Global Hues received the opportunity to interview Mr. Amitabh Jaipuria, MD & CEO of ZIQITZA Health Care Ltd to foreground the company’s incredible journey from its inception in 2005 to its execution of tireless work in saving countless lives during the pandemic.
Ziqitza Health Care Limited has been a pioneer in providing emergency medical and transport services in India since 2005. The concept behind its formation dictates that no person should ever lose their life due to delays in the arrival of emergency services. According to a report published by the Times of India, a substantial 30% deaths in road accidents occur owing to the same reason. Many lives could be saved if only prompt EMS services were a phone call away.
ZHL’s dedication to prevent such harrowing situations is reflected in their commitment to meet international standards of quality in providing Emergency Medical Services (EMS). The brand name Ziqitza ( jigyasa + chikitsa ) beautifully sums up their dedication to provide quality emergency healthcare to anyone, anywhere, anytime & anyplace.
The company’s services include ambulances, medical helplines, mobile medical units & healthcare packages featuring onsite medical rooms and occupational health centers, tailored individually for various corporate organizations to provide quality emergency medical response to patients and clients.
- Emergency Services: In association with National Health Mission and multiple state governments, they provide world-class EMS through ambulances, mobile medical units, and helplines across the country.
- Corporate Wellness Solutions: They offer one-stop-solution medical safety for organizations with services such as – Ambulances at the site, wellness practices at workplace, occupational health centres, telehealth services for employees, doctors at site, and medical rooms. A pre-designed holistic healthcare program is offered to corporate entities on the basis of their needs.
- Ambulance Services: It is imperative that a patient reaches the hospital within the golden hour of their survival. With a network of 7000 ambulances across 200 cities, they cater to all ambulance-related requirements, be it for a medical emergency, for intercity patient transfer, or a scheduled visit.
“Each individual of our team has experienced extreme personal hardship in serving the citizens of this country since the covid crisis unfolded “
– Amitabh Jaipuria, MD &CEO -Ziqitza Healthcare Limited
With their primus objective being the service of people in trying times like these, they had to up-scale their services over-night. A twofold approach is adopted to manage COVID-19 situations. Firstly, they work to provide ambulances for covid patients and their families with proper precautions. Secondly, they have made available a tele medical helpline (104) to give people verified information regarding the disease and keeping panic and mental stress at bay.
Since the onset of the pandemic, ZHL has been answering each call regarding covid with utmost care and in adherence with protocols received from state governments. In battling with covid, they had to scale up their call centre manpower, EMTs on ground, number of paramedics and prepare to receive 10x of calls inflow in a day than usual. With the healthcare policies evolving dynamically during the pandemic, Ziqitza, being the first line of defence in the pandemic, had to scale up overnight. This experience taught them to leverage their training, protocols and relationships with vendors/employees to ensure that their services are not impacted.
- Helpline : The 104 helpline currently being operated by ZHL, is instrumental in directing the calls for the transfer of COVID-19 suspected/confirmed patients to the helpline (108) in many states. Since it’s declaration as the national helpline on COVID, the MP and Odisha centres have witnessed a surge in the sudden inflow of calls from 2000 to approximately 22,000 calls per day. This helpline has received calls enquiring about COVID symptoms, treatments, precautions etc. The Tele-Medical Helpline has been at the forefront addressing these queries and ensuring panic is not spread and timely medical advice is provided.
- Ambulances & Safety Protocols For Covid Patients: After understanding the situation of the caller, the call center dispatches ambulances either with or without a ventilator as per the requirement. It also dispatches other registered ambulances. A triple-layered mask, PPE and gloves are ensured by the paramedic for patients and attendants. Ventilator management protocols are followed under the guidance of a doctor or a trained paramedic.
Saving Lives during the Pandemic
Ziqitza has succeeded in saving many lives during the pandemic. Their team has earned the title of ‘covid warriors’ by providing prompt ambulance services for covid patients across the country. Emergency ambulance services are being operated 24*7 in their continual efforts to save lives. Every single employee is committed to saving lives at all costs and has undergone extreme personal hardship to serve the citizens of this country. Till date they have handled 1.5 million calls and served 1.5 lac covid patients. They have also ensured that no cross infections occur in their ambulances and from March 2020 to April 2021, served around 3.9 million people. For their service during covid they have been awarded “4th CSR Health Impact Award for Covid Public Health Warriors in 2020”. Amitabh remarked, “The Covid pandemic has brought this sector into sharp focus and over the past few months ZHL’s 10,000 strong workforce has rendered selfless service to all in need and has helped save many lives. Now as we look to the future, ZHL will continue to play an important role in shaping the Emergency Healthcare space in the country. ZHL’s Founders have laid a strong foundation and we will create an Industry Leading Healthcare Company whose purpose will be “Saving Lives, Enhancing Lives”.
Managing Physiological Distress among Healthcare Workers
The Global Hues was informed that staff safety is ensured at all times in ZHL. Proper arrangements are made in the workplace to ensure social distancing norms, fumigation of office at frequent intervals and arrangement for travel, food and lodgement is made available as well. Medical treatment of staff workers and their families is ensured in case of medical emergencies. The company has ensured the vaccination of the frontline workers on priority to ensure their safety. In rare case of death, the company has ensured financial aid and support to family. A smooth and continuous engagement is guaranteed between the leadership and the frontline team to manage excessive mental stress and fatigue.
Overcoming Challenges in the Healthcare Sector
Ziqitza Healthcare Limited believes-
1) More investments in primary healthcare infrastructure in India is the need of the hour.
2) Research encouragement is needed to ensure innovative medical advisory in the most cost-effective manner to the citizens of the country.
3) Building IT infrastructure will allow remote accessibility to healthcare screening and advisory across rural and urban populations of the country.
4) The biggest challenge that our industry faces today is the shortage of trained manpower. For the development of efficient manpower it is imperative that trainees be upskilled as well as empathetic.
ZHL tells us “Our vision of saving lives through prompt and quality healthcare services to anyone, anywhere, anytime & anyplace. We Commit to Care, Aspire to be the Best, Revolutionize Services and to Expand to maximize reach,” quotes Amitabh Jaipuria, the CEO & MD. He reckons that these are the four crucial cornerstones that help Ziqitza stay ahead of the curve. Making divergence in their emergency response services in a few Indian states, the Company has also ventured into segments like Corporate Wellness Solutions, Telemedicine and lately expanding it to Online-Medical Consultation for more and more expansion.
ZHL’s mission also involves becoming a one stop shop for all kinds of non-hospital based medical care. It has already embarked on this journey and aims to become the most integrated and innovative player in this space in the coming years. ZHL is about to witness tremendous shifts in the services lineage, where they will propose diverse wellness products apart from ambulance services and ensure shift of collaboration of ‘only government businesses’ to private-sector businesses. This shift is being reflected from the fact that the organisation is transiting from being promoter- driven enterprise to a brand led by the adept professionals now.
Accolades Received –
- Real Impact Leaders Awards in 2021
- 4th CSR Health Impact Award for Covid Public Health Warriors in 2020
- Healthcare Excellence Awards in 2019
- Received the FICCI Road Safety Award in 2019
- Express Public Healthcare Awards in 2018
- Health Care Sabha Award for Most Effective PPP in 2017
- India Awards – BEST CEO (STARTUP) in 2014
- Times of India (TOI) – SOCIAL IMPACT AWARD – 2013
- Spirit of Humanity Awards – The Americares Awards – 2012
- Continuity & Recovery initiative Award – 2011
- BCI Continuity & Resilience Awards -2009
- Continuity & Recovery initiative Award – 2008
- BCI & DELOITTE award for Special Recognition – 2008
- Godfrey Phillips Bravery Award – 2007