Hyderabad-based start-up StanPlus is aiming to provide ambulance service to patients in under 10 minutes. The emergency service startup is trying to achieve this by next year. Managing a fleet of close to 3,000 ambulances, StanPlus now claims to dispatch ambulances in under four minutes and reach the patient in under 15 minutes.
The broader idea is to manage the emergency response for patients and hospitals both, says Prabhdeep Singh, Founder and CEO, StanPlus.
He explains, “In its current format, the hospital answers a call at its reception, and as one says it is an emergency, the call gets transferred to the emergency room. Then the transport department gets involved and eventually, an ambulance driver is involved. Typically, a hospital takes three to four minutes at least to make a decision of sending an ambulance, and then they take another 8-12 minutes in the process of dispatch.”
This is where StanPlus steps in — hospitals out-source this emergency call management to StanPlus. When a patient calls a hospital emergency, they answer the call directly at their call centers. “We are able to dispatch the ambulance within four minutes from the time of the call. This reduces morbidity and patient mortality,” Singh claims.
Singh says that hospitals are neither in the call-centre business nor are they running a logistics company. They are into providing healthcare. “This is a problem that we are trying to solve, and we are already working with 50-hospital units under 20-brands,” he adds.
By next year Singh claims that they would try to achieve an ambulance arrival time of under 10-minutes.
“We have partnered with hospitals and we station our ambulances close to these hospitals and also close to where people live (catchment areas of these hospitals). So, this way we are able to react quickly. Uber consistently reaches us in under 10-minutes – it’s not about traffic, it’s about the density of the network,” he says.
“We’ve transported over 300,000 patients so far after we started in 2016. We should be touching 15,000 to 18,000 patients this month. So the demand is very, very significant,” Singh says, adding that they were Ebitda positive last year. He claims that they continue to operate at strong operational profitability.
“We are tracking at about $10 million of revenue last year, and we should be three, two and a half to 3-times this year,” Singh says.
The maximum StanPlus charges during an emergency ambulance service are Rs 2,500 depending on the distance. This is covered by insurance, Singh claims. “We also do critical care transport over long distances and our rates are 10-15 per cent lower than prevailing market rates,” he adds.
StanPlus is now expanding to five more cities and aims to be in 15 cities by the end of this calendar year. They now plan to expand in Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Mumbai, Navi Mumbai, Kochi, Indore, Pune, Coimbatore, Bhubaneshwar, Guwahati, and Ranchi. “We are already present in Hyderabad, Bangalore, Raipur, Bhuvneshwar, Ahmedabad, and Kolkata.
They have worked with leading corporate hospitals of the country like Apollo Hospitals, Fortis Healthcare etc.
The firm now owns around 200 ambulances and they also work with local partners and have a total fleet size of 3,000 or so ambulances. Singh says that for emergencies they like to do it using their own ambulances and own drivers and paramedics.
StanPlus has recently raised $20 million in its Series A funding from HealthQuad, Kalaari Capital and HealthX. The amount will be utilized to scale up operations and reduce ambulance ETA from 15 minutes to 8 minutes.
Among the allied services, Singh says StanPlus is also one of the largest bereavement companies now in India and does work both for hospitals and employers post-death in a hospital.