First 5G-connected ambulance trial conducted in India

New Delhi: Bharti Airtel on Thursday partnered with Apollo Hospitals and Cisco to create a 5G-connected ambulance that can transform access to healthcare and save lives in emergency situations.

The custom-designed state-of-the-art 5G-connected ambulance is equipped with the latest medical equipment, patient monitoring applications, and telemetry devices that transmit the patient health data to the hospital in real-time.

In addition, it is also equipped with onboard cameras, camera-based headgear, and body cams for paramedic staff – all connected to the ultra-fast and low latency Airtel 5G network.

It will be further enabled with technologies like Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality, which will help the ambulance to act as an extension of the emergency room by remaining always connected to the hospital. This may also help transport doctors virtually to the ambulance.

A demonstration was conducted in Bengaluru over the 5G trial spectrum allotted to Airtel by the Department of Telecom.

“5G is a transformational technology and healthcare is one of the most promising use cases for 5G,” said Ajay Chitkara, Director & CEO, Airtel Business, Bharti Airtel in a statement.

Studies show that an increased journey distance to the hospital is associated with an increased risk of mortality, with a 10-km increase in straight-line distance associated with around a 1 per cent absolute increase in mortality.

Studies also indicate that prehospital time management should become a management objective.

“These insights propelled us to collaborate with Airtel on the 5G connected ambulance project and use 5G in order to utilise the disruption-free, lag-free connectivity it provides. This will help save many lives as timely treatment can be started even in the ambulance itself,” said Dr Sangita Reddy, Joint Managing Director, Apollo Hospitals Group.

“5G will be a game-changer in enabling new use cases and improving efficiency across every industry and specifically in the healthcare sector, as 5G will arm doctors with actionable insights to augment patient monitoring and treatment,” added Anand Bhaskar, Managing Director, Service Provider Business, Cisco India & SAARC.



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