Tackling COVID-19 in the home

Improving monitoring of potential COVID-19 cases in the community will reduce pressure on the healthcare system and stop transmission, according to proponents of a Western Australian telehealth consortium.

The consortium includes Cisco, Curtin University, GP superclinic operator Health Integra, ResApp, Prospector Biomedical Laboratories and InteliCare Holdings, under the umbrella of the Indo Asia Centre for Digital Health Commercialisation, led by chief executive Warren Harding.

The centre has been in the works for two years but the COVID-19 telehealth plan has been whipped together in just weeks.

The plan is to use mobile devices and wearables to track vital signs for patients, including heart rate, blood oxygen levels and breathing.

It could also use geofencing to ensure people are following quarantine restrictions.

Rather than having potential patients visit clinics, doctors will analyse cases remotely, via video.

A cheap wearable device can then be delivered to their door, to be used in conjunction with a mobile phone.

“We need to also tackle it in the community, to support the work of COVID clinics or emergency departments,” Mr Harding said.

“It taps into the capacity of Perth health providers in the community, and keeps (patients) in the home.”

Over time,

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Coronavirus impact: Fin Min allows states to borrow Rs 3.2 trn from market

The on Wednesday allowed open market borrowing for states up to a cumulative Rs 3.2 trillion from the market between April-December. The move comes states demanded more funds to meet expenses in dealing with the pandemic.

In a letter to the RBI, the ministry said that the Centre has decided to permit states to raise open market borrowing on the basis of 50 per cent the Net Borrowing Ceiling fixed for the year 2020-21 for financing the states’ annual plan for the fiscal.

As per the letter by the Department of Expenditure to the RBI, 28 states have been allowed to borrow a cumulative Rs 3,20,481 crore from markets on an ad-hoc basis for the first nine months of the current fiscal.

ALSO READ: Coronavirus LIVE updates: India reports 773 new cases, 32 deaths in 24 hrs

Accordingly, West Bengal can borrow Rs 20,362 crore, Maharashtra (Rs 46,182 crore), Uttar Pradesh (Rs 29,108 crore), Karnataka (Rs 27,054 crore), Gujarat (Rs 26,112 crore) and Rajasthan (Rs 16,387 crore).

is requested to make necessary arrangements in consultation with the state government to raise

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Our Vande Mataram moment, says IndiGo as it offers relief flights for free

IndiGo, the largest Indian airline with a fleet of 259 aircraft, has proposed to operate relief flights for carrying food and medicines to remote areas free of cost. This was announced by the airline’s CEO Wednesday.

has been authorised by the government to operate 30 relief flights, but Dutta said the airline wants to do more without charging the government.

The airline has a fleet of 219 Airbus A320 aircraft and 25 smaller ATR-72 jets which can fly to remote areas. It flies to 63 destinations in the country including six cities in North Eastern area – Imphal, Shillong, Aizawl, Dimapur, Agartala and Guwahati.

With passenger aircraft movement banned, feels its fleet can be used to ferry essentials across the country. While it has become an alternative revenue source for other airlines, wants to do it for free. “Charging for transporting emergency medical supplies in the middle of a pandemic is not a profit opportunity moment for IndiGo. It instead is a Vande Mataram moment for us,” Dutta said.

ALSO READ: Coronavirus LIVE updates: India reports 773 new cases, 32 deaths in 24 hrs

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Businesses get go ahead to proceed with granting share options

Businesses can continue to grant share options through the Enterprise Management Incentive (EMI) scheme, safe in the knowledge that current tax advantages still apply, according to share incentives specialists at accountancy firm, Menzies LLP.

The European Commission confirmed earlier this week that the EU State Aid approval, which is required to operate EMI schemes in the UK, has now been secured. This approval had expired on 6th April 2018 and since then businesses seeking to grant share options through an existing or new EMI scheme have been advised to hold fire.

Georgina Holloway, tax manager and share incentives specialist at accountancy firm, Menzies LLP, said “This will be a relief for many small and growing businesses that value their EMI schemes and want to continue to use them to attract and retain key employees.

“While we expected HMRC’s application under the EU State Aid rules to be successful, it is unfortunate that small and growing businesses have been kept waiting for clarification. Without state aid approval in place, many did not feel confident granting new share options until they could be certain that current tax advantages would apply.

“This development restores certainty and means employers can continue to use

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