In a first, Maharashtra government has devised a system where blood will be a phone call-away, to be supplied to hospitals by specially kitted-out motorbikes. "Blood would be transported by motorbikes from the blood bank to the hospital. Specially designed vehicles will have the facility to preserve (and carry) blood," a health department official said here.
A special helpline number (102) will be made functional for those seeking blood urgently. Also, there would be no need for the patient's relatives to replace the blood units provided to them. As a pilot, the delivery service will be launched in Sindhudurg and Satara districts. The project will be replicated in Mumbai and Pune in the second phase.
A private agency has been appointed for delivery service in the two districts. It will be responsible for transportation within a radius of 40 km, or upto 1-hour distance by motorcycle. The official said the objective was to make the process of securing blood for a patient hassle-free.
About 75% of the blood banks in the state are located at district headquarters, of which 46%t are located in the cities of Mumbai, Pune, Thane and Nagpur.