Disturbed by what patients in Kashmir have to face in wake of ineffective and slow healthcare, Sagheer Wani, a young qualified engineer and a technician, invented a four-in-one Portable Cardiac Monitoring Unit. Syed Asma reports.
After four years of hard work and expenditure of over one lakh rupees, 33-year-old Sagheer Wani is ready with his innovation: a four-in-one ‘Portable Cardiac Monitoring Unit’. The non-invasive and cost effective machine, as he claims will be beneficial for cardiac patients.
This portable monitoring unit consists of an electronic diagnostic stethoscope, a semiautomatic sphygmomanometer (blood pressure apparatus), a standard 9-lead EGC monitoring system and a phonocardiogram. Once out in the market Sagheer’s four-in-one equipment will cost just Rs 6000.
A qualified engineer and a technician by profession, Sagheer is waiting to get his innovation patented before he formally introduces it in market. A resident of Hazratbal, Srinagar, Sagheer is presently posted in the department of biomedical engineering in Sher-i-Kashmir Institute of Medical Science (SKIMS). He has done engineering from Cleveland Institute of Electronics (CIE) through distance mode.
For last 15 years, till his younger brother got a job, Sagheer was the lone bread winner for his family that includes his mother, younger brother and sister. He had to take care of his family after his father passed away of lung cancer.
“I was studying in 7th standard when my father died,” Sagheer recalls. “My mother sold our ancestral land to support us. I was too young to work at that time,” he says.
Money didn’t last long and after passing Class 10 from a local government school, Sagheer started working from home repairing electronic appliances.
It was quite impossible for Sagheer to continue his studies as regular studies and work at the same time, so he pursued his studies through distant mode.
Repairing electronic appliances did not fetch him much, so he had to look for a better means of earning. “God was kind,” Sagheer quips, “as I got recruited in SKIMS as a junior technician. It was 1998. This job helped me to take care of my family in a better way and I could pursue my studies.”
Experience of repairing electronic appliances and an enthusiasm to do something innovative helped Sagheer’s to be a success, he believes.
The idea stuck him after he fell ill and had to visit a doctor. “After repeating numerous medical tests and spending a lot of money, I was diagnosed with hypertension,” Sagheer smiles. “This made me to think about patients who have comparatively more complicated ailments.”
After giving thought over the same, he came up with an idea of this portable unit, which received great appreciation and applause by the concerned faculty of SKIMS. It was under the assistance of his friend Dr Sanullah Kuchay, who taught him a bit of human anatomy and physiology, that he could materialise the idea.
“The portable monitoring unit includes four different apparatus,” Sagheer informs, “intends to save time and energy of heart patients who otherwise have to roam in different directions to get medically checked.”
Besides, it will be equally beneficial for doctors as it will help them in primary diagnosis if not more, says Sagheer.
Sagheer claims his product will be the best in the market once it is out. Explaining its benefits he says, “the equipment carries high end stethoscope which will not only help to listen to heart murmurs of patients but will also help to auscultate that of foetus as well.”
It would be very beneficial if the apparatus will be kept in dispensaries and primary health centres, Sagheer suggests, and this will help the expecting mothers not to travel long distance for minor medical examinations.
Besides, the standard 9-lead ECG monitoring system can help to monitor heart murmurs and can helps to convert it to graph once the apparatus is interfaced with any laptop or desktop.
“I have designed software especially for this and we can even use it at our homes,” he says, “the graphical representation and heart murmurs can also be recorded and later shown to a doctor as well. It is quite a user-friendly apparatus.”
Apart from these, the unit includes Phonocardiogram which is needed by patient suffering from valvular heart disease.
“It can’t do complete eco-testing, but mechanical sounds of four valves can be recorded and converted into graphical representation,” Sagheer informs.
And to reduce the error, instead of aneroid sphygmomanometer, he has used digital one.
Confident about his product, Sagheer suggests that it should be used in dispensaries, primary health centres, OPDs and believes it would be of great help to the doctors pursuing research.