Telemedicine units for COVID-19: An experience from Madhya Pradesh


  • Sourabh Saxena Technical Lead-Comprehensive Primary Health Care WISH foundation Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh
  • Karishma Srivastava Head of Urban Health Program; WISH Foundation; New Delhi
  • Roshni Dilbagi NCD and capacity building specialist; WISH Foundation; Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh
  • Ashish Saxena Deputy Director - NCD; NHM MP; Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh





On 31st December 2019, the World Health Organization (WHO) China Country Office was informed of cases of pneumonia of unknown aetiology detected in Wuhan City, Hubei Province of China.(1) The first cases of COVID-19 outside of China were identified on January 30 in India and it has spread to 210 countries in all world regions by 10th April 2020, with more than 1.6 million confirmed and more than 0.1 million deaths worldwide.(2)

Disasters and pandemics pose exceptional challenges to providing health care. Though telemedicine will not solve them all, it is well suited for scenarios in which medical practitioners can evaluate and manage patients. Previous work has specifically described the potential for using telemedicine in disasters and public health emergencies, wherein Patients prioritize convenient and inexpensive care, whether in-person visits becomes the last option for meeting patient needs.(3,4)


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WHO report on emergency preparedness responses [Internet]. Pneumonia of unknown cause – China; [updated on 5th Jan 2020 cited on 10th April 2020]. Available from:

COVID-19 Dashboard by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) at Johns Hopkins University (JHU) [Internet]; [updated and cited on 10th April 2020]. Available from:

Duffy S, Lee TH. In-person health care as option B. N Engl J Med 2018;378:104-6.

Lurie N, Carr BG. The role of telehealth in the medical response to disasters. JAMA Intern Med 2018;178:745-6 .

Joshi AU, Randolph FT, Chang AM, et al. Impact of emergency department tele intake on left without being seen and throughput metrics. Acad Emerg Med 2020; 27:139-47

Telemedicine Practice Guidelines [Internet]. Enabling Registered Medical Practitioners to Provide Healthcare Using Telemedicine; [updated on 22nd March 2020 cited on 10th April 2020]. Available from:

National Health Mission- guidelines and instruction for establishing telemedicine units issued by Government of Madhya Pradesh: State guidelines to districts for establishment of telemedicine units [Issued on 26th March 2020 and 1st April 2020].

Kailasam S, Kumar S, Dharanipragada J. Arogyasree: An enhanced grid-based approach to mobile telemedicine. Int J Telemed Appl. 2010;2010:536237.




How to Cite

Saxena S, Srivastava K, Dilbagi R, Saxena A. Telemedicine units for COVID-19: An experience from Madhya Pradesh. Indian J Community Health [Internet]. 2020 Apr. 20 [cited 2024 Apr. 13];32(2 (Supp):277-80. Available from:



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