App-based ride hailing platform Ola has rolled out ‘Ola Emergency’ service in Mumbai, expanding the service availability across 15 major Indian cities. The service allows citizens across the country to access essential medical care with minimum delay, and the facility is now available in Mumbai, Bengaluru, Gurgaon, Visakhapatnam, Nashik, Varanasi, Indore, Bhopal, Amritsar, Ludhiana, Jalandhar, Patiala, Mohali, Rourkela and Bhubaneswar.
Through Ola Emergency, the company says it is providing convenient, reliable and safe transport services for all non-COVID-19 medical trips, such as scheduled check-ups, dialysis, chemotherapy, and for immediate medical needs such as injuries, amongst others. The service is rolled out in partnership with various state governments, ensuring all norms of social distancing and safety measures. To use the service citizens across these cities can seamlessly book a cab by selecting the ‘Ola Emergency’ category and entering the drop location from the list of available hospitals in the city. The platform allows trips to be booked only from homes to hospitals and vice versa.
For Mumbai, Ola says it has mapped over 200 hospitals in its app across the city. It says the service provides for a clean and safe ride experience by ensuring that all earmarked cabs are equipped with essential protective equipment like masks and sanitizers and are operated by specially trained driver-partners following proper sanitary measures as per the guidelines of the Ministry of Health. Customers will be charged a nominal fare to compensate driver-partners for their services.
Commenting on the launch, Anand Subramanian, spokesperson, Ola said, “The response to Ola Emergency since its launch less than two weeks ago has been very encouraging. Thousands of citizens in these cities have availed the service and we continue to receive requests from across the country to enable this service.” Ola Emergency was first introduced in Bengaluru earlier this month and has since then been expanded to the 14 other cities mentioned earlier.
“The quality of cars, safety measures, and timeliness of the service has been welcomed by citizens and the authorities alike, further motivating us to double down on expanding the service to more cities amidst the extended lockdown. The service will also help provide an economic lifeline to many driver-partners whose incomes have taken a hit in the past few weeks,” added Subramanian.
A few days ago, Ola had opened up its technology platform to the central and state government (s) to fight COVID-19 through ‘Ola CONNECTS’ (COmprehensive Navigation, NEtworking, Control and Tracking Solution). The platform can be deployed as a turn-key solution or customised to specific requirements, to assist governments and its various agencies in managing ‘real-time war rooms’ for various operations at scale, amidst the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, with data privacy and security. Keeping in mind national interests and welfare of citizens, Ola is offering the CONNECTS platform and required development solutions free of cost to the government and its various agencies.
How coronavirus has hit the global auto industry: a timeline