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Yeoman Service by TFMC Corona Help Desk


Hyderabad, May 11, 2021: We all know the perception of WhatsApp Groups. They are abused as spreaders of misinformation, False, Fake information, and hate messages. As a result, some groups are considered time pass, useless, and a waste of time. Most of the groups are discounted, ridiculed, considered a nuisance as people are constantly buzzed with useless messages. It is considered a necessary evil.

But when you read about the ‘TFMC Corona Help Desk” Whatsapp Group, your perception will change. The group is created by Telangana Facilities Management Council (TFMC) at the beginning of the Second Wave, four weeks back.

The single motive behind this, according to Satyanarayana Mathala, President of TFM, “is to help people working in IT industries who are in distress, in panic mode looking for a hospital bed, Oxygen, Plasma, Ambulance, etc. As the virus was spreading like a wildfire, there was a shortage of beds, Oxygen, Ambulance services”.

That is when Satya formed this group, shared a link with fellow Facilities Management Professionals asking them to volunteer. Slowly his colleagues started volunteering. The initiative is codenamed as ‘Project Sahaya.’ 

Today it has 200 members, providing service from 9 am to 6 pm, but most extended and almost becomes round-the-clock service, because it is an emergency.

TFMC is a 400 member strong professional body of facilities management professionals who supervise smooth functioning of 1500 plus IT Offices in and around the tri-cities of Cyberabad, Hyderabad, and Secunderabad in which nearly 6.5 lakh IT employees work, informed Satya.

The ‘TFMC Corona Help Desk” (Not a physical one, it is WhatsApp Desk) is manned by 10 active members who include: Mohini, Shanoj, Girish, Satyanarayana, Shruti, Sandhya, Sapna, Ramakanth and Srinivas.

In the last ten days alone, according to Mohini Chaitanya, who works with IKEA, the Help Desk got 637 requests. Out of which Critical bed request in nearest hospital (Oxygen beds, Ventilator and NIV etc) was around 230; Blood and Plasma 80; Consultation via doctor request 25; Oxygen supplies 82.  

Also, there were around 130 requests for support outside Hyderabad in cities like Vizag, Vijayawada, Nellore, Warangal, Thirupathi etc shared Mohini.

Besides the above there are calls for Ambulance support.

The Help Desk is targeted at people in distress particularly people from IT Industries and people in and around Madhapur and Gachibowli, the IT Corridor, but they are not restricted. The Help Desk number is 6309371600. It has been running for the past four weeks. 

Any support from Bed Availability, Plasma Sourcing, On Call Consultation with Covid affected patients and guiding them to the nearest hospital and ambulance support, the Help Desk provides the information, connects the right source.

There is an abundance of information available. Most of the information which is in circulation through WhatsApp messages is crap. What we do is curate data collected through various sources.

One of our specialized team members check the Forward Messages Authenticity. We found that 90 per cent of information in circulation is useless. We validate the information, cross-check the same and when requests come we use the data to facilitate their request, informs Sandhya Jonnada who works with Vigilent Tech.

We share live updates very frequently on the status of hospital beds and their availability, she adds.

All these FMC volunteers are doubling their roles. They are employees and working from Home. In the case of Mohini, the IKEA where she works is open. So they do their regular jobs and additionally, they run the Help Desk.

‘It is so satisfying that we are of some help to the people during these troubled times’, says Mohini. It gives a lot of satisfaction. ‘When we share the problem with others and help them as their family members, it is like a win-win, both them and we are very happy’, says Ramakanth.

There was a 45 days old toddler from Chirala, who was in emergency. The child had to be shifted to a better medical facility. We tried something at Vijayawada. It didn’t work. Then the same vehicle brought the mother and child to Ankur Hospital. We scouted the hospital suitable for the child and the mother with the specialties required for the medical condition of the child. Now, the child is said to be recovering fast and is likely to be discharged soon. shared Mohini and Sandhya.

One night we got a SoS Call for an Oxygen Concentrator from a 75 years old man living in the outskirts of the city. His saturation levels were going down and down.  It was the time of night curfew. We have connected both the supplier and the family, who negotiated the deal. We facilitated all the clearances from police, fixed up a vehicle, ensured its safe passage and reached the family. This is what we do, we connect the right supplier and consumer. We also get expert advice informs Satya

This is only possible because of the unstinted support from all the volunteers, doctors, admins at the hospital, police and GHMC says Satya.

We are also inaugurating an isolation centre on Thursday informs Satyanarayana Mathala. We got all approvals from GHMC and the corporates came forward to sponsor this project, adds Satya.

What Is this isolation centre?  It is uniquely different. The main objective of this isolation centre is to provide relief to people below the poverty line segment who don’t have space in their home for isolation. They will be treated for 14 days with all medicines, food and nursing care in case of emergency GHMC will shift them to a big hospital in an Ambulance. We are calling this Isolation cum Oxygen Hub for people below the poverty line, he informs. It is a 30 bedded one. It will come up in a community hall at Chandanagar Community Hall. The centre is equipped with basic medicines, nursing staff, Food, oxygen to cater to mild cases. This is being set up in support with corporate houses like GHMC – Providing space; IKEA arranging 30 Beds; HARSCO -Oxygen concentrators; Gramener – Oximeters; Zenoti – to provide Nursing staff and operational costs and TFMC & GHMC are the enablers of this initiative,  informs Satya.  Doctor Ravi and Mr Ravi Kiran, Zonal Commissioner, GHMC have been very helpful.

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