Covid care facilities inaccessible in case of emergency: SPI survey in mini grid villages


Mini grid villages in India experienced an intense health crisis in 2021, as compared to 2020, Smart Power India, a subsidiary of the Rockefeller Foundation has said.

SPI develops and works on scaling sustainable models to accelerate electricity access and spur economic development in rural underserved communities. It said in a survey conducted by it across mini grid villages in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Jharkhand, 77% of the participants said Covid care facilities were inaccessible in case of emergency. If last year the concern for rural areas was livelihood, this year, it was access to healthcare, it said.

It has accordingly partnered with three non governmental organisations (NGOs)- GiveIndia Foundation, Swasth Foundation and Eka Care to provide Covid relief, primarily to their mini grid consumers and ESCO employees. Relief work will focus on meeting oxygen supply by providing oxygen cylinders and concentrators to Covid patients, facilitating in-person and tele consultation for those with chronic conditions as well as procuring and distributing PPE kits to health professionals and essential workers.

“Last year we focussed on providing livelihood support to the rural community. This year, we see an urgent need to address the issue of lack of access to quality medical services. Health and safety of our mini grid customers and ESCO employees are some of our immediate priorities. These partnerships aim to support our ailing health infrastructure,” Jaideep Mukherji, CEO, Smart Power India, said.



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