Thursday, December 7, 2023

108 Services: Tender process slows down after NHM notification


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By Our Reporter

SHILLONG, Nov 18: The ongoing tender process for selecting the best company to run the 108 emergency ambulance services appears to have slowed down after the latest notification of National Health Mission Meghalaya that said the Health department is scrutinising details that has come to its notice.
It is not clear what kind of scrutiny is going on but several bidders raised concerns in the past mentioning conflict of interest as well as alleged misinformation spread by some bidders.
As per the Technical Evaluation Stage 1 published by NHM Meghalaya, RUNO consortium, Medulance and Ziquitsa are the three top scorers.
Shillong-based RUNO Health, a company incubated under the Meghalaya PRIME incubator as a healthcare start-up, is one of the bidders. It managed to partner with Emergent Global Services (EGS) which is led by Ranganatham Veluru. Ranganatham apparently is the key architect of 108 and 104 Services in India.
There were rumours about his possible relation with GVK EMRI but he categorically denied any direct or indirect relation with any company other than the members of the consortium. He produced an affidavit in this regard and shared it with NHM Meghalaya.
The United Kingdom Specialist Ambulance Services, which is supported by globally well-known emergency response services company UKNHS, is also a key part of the consortium.
The consortium claimed that it has a clear intention and vision to build local competence in the 108 EMS domain with RUNO Health.
Further, the consortium claimed that it has a strategic plan to take care of jobs and related manpower by setting an industry benchmark in this service. The consortium, which is technologically advanced with AI integration with both drivers and vehicles, also claimed that it will offer “revolutionary” performance if given a chance to serve.
Some unions expressed concern over the involvement of EGS in the operation of 108 services in Delhi. However, EGS said neither it nor Ranganatham was ever involved in the Delhi operations. The company emphasised that any misinformation spread by anyone should be viewed as malafide.

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