The Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdown has impacted one and all, but it has had the most significant impact on the elderly. At a time when senior citizens are staying away from their sons and daughters, Samarth is showing a way and an effective model to take care of them.
During the pandemic, the organisation is taking care of 400 families spread across 40 Indian cities, including metros and Tier-2 cities.
“Elderly people have special needs and, during the lockdown, they have their own problems… we are trying to help these families,” said Asheesh Gupta, Founder & Chief Care Officer, Samarth.
“Our 150-plus strong brigade of care managers has been in touch with our customers in India, as well as those living across 20 countries to help their parents/elders living in India. On an average, they are receiving 25-30 requests every day during the pandemic from people staying abroad who need a comprehensive support system in India for their parents,” said Gupta, a graduate of IIT Kanpur and IIM Calcutta.
“We have a very nominal fee… its evolution as a one-stop comprehensive national organisation serving the full range of needs of the elderly is nothing short of extraordinary. From support, advice, care, services, research, innovation, advocacy, and rights, it encapsulates every aspect of the elderly ecosystem to achieve its goal of enhancing the quality of life of seniors in India,” he said.
Gupta said the caregivers visit the elderly at regular intervals and take care of their needs. Samarth has identified 70-odd needs for the elderly staying alone. “We take care of them as their sons and daughters would do,” he said.
“With a holistic care subsystem being provided to the members, Samarth has enabled the elderly with the required assistance and turned them more resilient. It is noticed that the families under Samarth's care have significantly fewer cases of Covid-19 than the average elderly in India,” said Gupta.
The Samarth care programme provides augmented support to the elders by arranging supplies of essentials such as medicines, provisions, cash, check-in calls to ensure support as well as avoiding isolation, tracking of vitals, home isolation support, hospitalisation support, oxygen cylinders, concentrators among others.
“While elders typically are not well versed with technology, we have enabled them to use mobile-based communication and technologies and online entertainment,” he said, pointing out that they are also facilitating teleconsultation with doctors.