Partha Pratim Das Mohapatra’s latest innovation, EzyCheck can check a person’s oxygen level, bilirubin and blood sugar in a non-invasive way within 10 seconds, and it costs only 30 rupees.
EzyCheck is Partha Pratim Das Mohapatra’s latest innovation. Within 10 seconds, this new device can check a person’s oxygen level, bilirubin and blood sugar in a non-invasive way. The best part about the device is that it costs only 30 rupees. In a telephonic interview with Dr Ashish Kumar Dwivedy, the innovator spoke extensively about his family background, journey as an innovation, future plans, and the need for science with a human face. The following is an edited excerpt of the interview:
1. What prompted you to go for EzeCheck?
I belong to a lower middle-class family. My mother, Asha Lata Das Mohapatra, was a heart patient. She went through a heart surgery at the age of 37. The root cause of her ailment was anaemia. Do you know that 2 out of every three women (in India) are anaemic? Unhealthy mothers can’t produce healthy children. This, to me, was the starting point. This singular incident ignited my interest in innovation in healthcare.
2. Tell us about your educational qualification and family background.
I did my graduation in electronic engineering from MBC Institute of Engineering and Technology, Burdhwan, West Bengal and served the health care industry for 11 years. My last job was at Grant Thorton. There was always a demand for low-cost portable devices. In 2018 I left my job and started my company (EzyRx). My father, Siddharth Das Mohapatra, owned a small electronics shop at Egra, East Midnapore, West Bengal. Maybe that was the starting point, the initial inspiration. I have two sisters.
3. When did you actually start believing that you had an innovator in you?
It wasn’t until recently. EzeCheck, as a concept, was highly appreciated. For six months, the device was on trial. Odisha Start-Up was of immense help. The innovator in me was recognized as well as patronized by KIIT Technology Business Incubator (KTBI). Being an MBA (with IT specialisation) and exposure to the working environments of the Gulf, Singapore, and Europe helped me a lot. Back home, the Dept. of Science and Technology, Dept. of Biotechnology, Ministry of Electronics, and IT were of immense help to the newly born EzeRx. We also received funding from Indian Oil Corporation.
4. How do you describe the social relevance of science and technology in India?
The social relevance of Science and Technology is more felt now, during Corona times than before. There is an imminent need for early detection. However, only 10 per cent of Indian society believes in preventive health care. In our villages, things are even worse. Villagers wait for days for their reports. EzeCheck offers bloodless testing. It is highly affordable. It can be a boon to the economically underprivileged. Taking quality healthcare to rural areas of India has always been my dream. I have always cherished the dream of making the diagnostic process less painful, bloodless. Blood collection, esp. Neonatal blood collection can be extremely painful. Our present technology aims at ushering in an era of painless diagnostics. Early detection is very crucial for many diseases such as oral cancer.
5. Is the funding ecosystem in India conducive to innovation?
Futuristic technology attracts sub-optimal funding or no funding at all. The same has been the case with us. We are in talks with venture capitalists and strategic investors for funding for EzeCheck.
6. Which scientists have inspired you the most?
Dr A. P. J. Abdul Kalam, no doubt about that. He has always been an inspiration for me. Coming from a family with modest means, Dr Kalam’s journey to becoming the missile man of India has been the greatest inspirational tale for me. What also comes as an inspiration (to me) was his last day spent in the midst of students at IIM.
7. What are your views on Atmanirbhar Bharat?
The start-up policy is remarkable. What is required is an agency or body that can take it forward. The goal to make the country and its citizens independent and self-reliant in all senses is definitely laudable.
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