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‘Operation ASHA is like the Microsoft and Infosys of the NGO world. It is hope for millions … who need services, all over the world.’ 

Onno Ruhl, Country Director of the World Bank in India 

Operation ASHA has developed a highly effective and innovative model for detection and treatment of tuberculosis (TB). The model is patient-centric, community driven, deep, low cost, last mile delivery system that is scalable and replicable worldwide and is heavily supported with technology. It serves 8 million people, living in over 8000 slums, villages and tribal areas across India and Cambodia with its own staff. The model has also been replicated by third parties in India and seven other countries: Afghanistan, Tanzania, Peru, Uganda, Kenya, Dominican Republic and Cambodia.  

Operation ASHA’s community health workers (CHWs) raise awareness, scour the communities for symptomatics, ensure testing, link them to high quality medical practitioners and finally provide treatment and ensure adherence.

Operation ASHA works in collaboration with governments’/ public health departments as well as private sector hospitals, which provide medicines, diagnostics and physicians’ services mostly for free. 

Operation ASHA also advocates with all stakeholders to improve lives of TB patients.

CHWs are supported heavily with technology applications, including the world renowned eCompliance. Its first version was built with support from Microsoft Research. Our partnership was tweeted by Bill Gates. Since then, many other highly effective technology applications for detection, management of lab results and accounting of user fee have also been developed and implemented. These standardize every action that the CHW and patient need to take to complete the treatment in full. 

The technology also produces accurate and reliable data, which is collated into an electronic medical record system and produces reports at the click of a button. Baxter, a multinational pharma company, Columbia University, USA and German Leprosy & TB Relief Association have taken licenses for our technology.

Operation ASHA serves the poorest of the poor. “As I think of the slum that we visited, tears form ….the smell… , sewage, trash and flies…, the heat, the rancid pales of water, the public defecation, or the food being cooked next to trash covered in flies.”, observed Tonya Mann, who visited recently.

From the beginning, many experts stated that Operation ASHA’s model could deliver any health service. This proved to be true. Today, Operation ASHA has successfully applied its model to provide treatment, education and prevention for TB, haemophilia, diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, and adolescent and menstrual health. Its technology has also been used for school attendance and improving educational outcomes.

In terms of number of patients served, Operation ASHA is the third biggest TB control NGO in the world. Not only that, it achieves an unprecedented treatment success rate, at a cost that is 32 times less than other NGOs, which do similar work. 

In the delivery process, Operation ASHA has generated dignified employment for nearly 1800 semi-literate disadvantaged youths (full time equivalent). Thus, Operation ASHA treats TB patients, creates jobs and supports economic development.

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