Thirty-five-year-old Kaushik was grievously injured in a road accident. He had a cervical injury that immobilised him, he needed tracheostomy (help in breathing through tubes) and had lost control of bladder. Although his life was out of danger, his injuries, however, threatened to cripple him.
He was staring at the prospect of a long and prohibitively expensive stay at the super-speciality hospital, which made his family in Hyderabad desperately look for alternatives.
For such patients who are looking for post-hospitalisation care at a lower cost, there are limited options in India. Either they end up at home or if they are from out of town, and have to meet doctor post surgery, then in a relative’s place.
The family of Kaushik, however, had another option in Hyderabad.
After close to 80 days of stay, Kaushik, who was brought in a wheelchair, now managed to stand on his feet and walk-out of SuVitas, the post-hospitalisation rehab facility in Hyderabad.
Known as Transition Care, the facility provided the much needed bedside care and active physiotherapy sessions to enable Kaushik regain strength and his old gait. All this came at one third of the cost that is charged in a typical super-speciality hospital.
That’s the speciality of transition care facilities. They provide an alternative to patients and their families who are looking for post-hospitalisation care for two to 16 weeks at an affordable cost. These facilities are not clinics because they do not have operation theatres, pharmacies or diagnostic facilities.
They just provide a home-like environment with round the clock medical supervision, trained doctors, nurses, nutritionists, tailor-made diet plan and personal physiotherapists to enable patients recuperate on time.
“There is a huge need for such facilities in India. Metros are filled with families wherein parents are aged and children are abroad. Whenever, something happens to parents, children rush in, stay for a while and then go back to join work. Transition centres are the facilities that take care of parents in such situations,” says Bipin Pendyala Founder and MD of SuVitas, the transition care facility opened recently in Hyderabad.
According to a McKinsey report of 2012, on an average, about 40 per cent of patients in metro cities like Chennai, Hyderabad and Bangalore end up travelling close to 100 kilometers to access health care. Non-local families who visit cities find themselves in a quandary because they can’t afford a longer stay.
Most of them end up in lodges, relatives’ homes, serviced apartment or hotels, which are inconvenient or expensive. “There are nuclear families in metros which struggle if the elderly get sick and need care for a longer time. Then there are medical tourists, who come on a 10 to 15 day package but have to stay longer because they need medical care and post-operative check ups. Transition care is huge in Western countries and fast catching up in India too,” says founder (Strategy and Marketing), SuVitas, K. Shruthi.
Already, the transition care with 50 beds has provided service to close to 44 patients since it started a few months ago.