CAWACH to provide support for start-ups to find innovative solutions against COVID-19: 5 startups that have already stepped it up
India's start-ups are proving their mettle in the national fight against COVID-19. From bringing out a ventilator the size of a kitchen toaster to designing a testing kit that gives results in 5-10 minutes, the amazing thinkers and innovators at these companies have stepped on the peddle like never before.
On 3 April, the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India, announced that it was setting up CAWACH - a centre with a Rs 56 crore kitty to back more start-ups and more out-of-the-box ideas to beat coronavirus.
CAWACH stands for Centre for Augmenting WAR with COVID-19 Health Crisis. Though the acronym may be a bit laboured, the centre will have the important task of identifying up to 50 innovations and startups that can help in the current situation and supporting them. The implementing agency will be Society for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, a business incubator at IIT Bombay.
While CAWACH is yet to announce which firms will get research and development support from it, here's a quick look at what some Indian start-ups have managed to do so far:
Mylab Discovery Solutions, a Pune-based start-up, developed a coronavirus testing kit and got approval for commercial use by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR). They can produce 1-1.5 lakh tests per week but they hope to scale production to meet the growing demand. These tests reduce the testing time considerably as they complete the screening as well as confirming process within 2.5 hours. The kit was developed in six short weeks and is being sold at 1/4th of the cost of the imported kits.
Bione is a Bangalore-based biotech start-up that has launched it’s rapid, at-home testing kits for the novel coronavirus. The kits claim to provide a result within 5-10 minutes. The company is at the moment producing 20,000 kits per week and will be selling them through their own platform for Rs 2,000-3,000. These kits are approved by the ICMR and are said to be extremely easy to use. All you need to do is sanitize your finger and prick it to get a drop of blood for the test.
AgVa, a Noida-based start-up, is aiming to bridge the gap between the projected demand and supply of ventilators. The company makes a portable ventilator that is the size of a toaster.
Maruti Suzuki will be working with AgVa to scale up the production quickly. Their goal is to be able to manufacture 20,000 ventilators in 30 days. The device runs off room air and doesn't need an oxygen supply. It is also a lot more affordable than traditional ventilators, at Rs 1.5-2 lakhs per unit. (A traditional ventilator, by contrast, can cost upwards of Rs 7 lakh each and requires an oxygen supply).
The Internet makes it easier to spread awareness but also to spread misinformation. Haptik is a Mumbai-based start-up that launched a chatbot on Whatsapp aimed at answering COVID-19 related queries and dispelling myths. The service used machine learning and the information they provide has been sourced from the World Health Organization.
KinicApp, a Gurgaon-based start-up, has tied up with government-approved coronavirus testing labs to provide doorstep testing in Mumbai. The test needs to be prescribed by a doctor still and the results are delivered within 48 hours. The test is priced at Rs 4,500. The company plans to roll out the service in other major cities as well.
Full disclosure: myUpchar is a health start-up with services like medicine e-commerce, lab testing and teleconsulting with doctors open during the lockdown.
For more information, read our article on COVID-19 Point Of Care Tests.
Health articles in Firstpost are written by myUpchar.com, India’s first and biggest resource for verified medical information. At myUpchar, researchers and journalists work with doctors to bring you information on all things health.
Updated Date: Apr 04, 2020 19:46:01 IST
Tags : Bione, CAWACH, Centre For Augmenting WAR With COVID-19 Health Crisis, Coronavirus, Coronavirus India, Coronavirus News, Coronavirus Outbreak, Coronavirus Pandemic, COVID-19, Haptik, Indian Startups, Mylab, NewsTracker, Novel Coronavirus
The information provided here is intended to provide free education about certain medical conditions and certain possible treatment. It is not a substitute for examination, diagnosis, treatment, and medical care provided by a licensed and qualified health professional. If you believe you, your child or someone you know suffers from the conditions described herein, please see your health care provider immediately. Do not attempt to treat yourself, your child, or anyone else without proper medical supervision. You acknowledge and agree that neither myUpchar nor firstpost is liable for any loss or damage which may be incurred by you as a result of the information provided here, or as a result of any reliance placed by you on the completeness, accuracy or existence of any information provided herein.
Coronavirus infection: How long do COVID-19 patients remain infectious?
Study says mutations of SARS-CoV-2 virus might not be as harmful as the original strain
COVID-19 Vaccine Update: Novavax starts phase I/II clinical trials, here's all you need to know about the vaccine
Remdesivir preliminary results from NIAID trial published; suggest improvement in recovery time from COVID-19
Heatwave in parts of India: How to recognize and prevent a heatstroke
New study suggests PPE made with electroceutical fabric may provide better protection against COVID-19
Coronavirus Outbreak Updates: Mumbai reports 1,382 new COVID-19 cases; confirmed infections rise to 25,317
Bangladesh medical team says Ivermectin with antibiotic Doxycycline works to treat COVID-19 patients
Coronavirus Outbreak Updates: Assam reports highest single-day rise in COVID-19 cases with 39 new infections; 107 active cases in state currently
Coronavirus Outbreak Updates: Railways will partially restore train services from 1 June, says Centre; bookings for 200 trains to begin tomorrow
Coronavirus Outbreak Updates: 459 people test positive for COVID-19 in Pune today, total number of cases rises to 6,153
Coronavirus Outbreak Updates: 366 new COVID-19 infections reported in Gujarat today, total number of cases rises to 11,746 in state