Are you a medical student, a resident doctor or a physician? If yes, then you will definitely relate with this one. Violence against doctors has become a serious issue in major parts of India. If a patient’s condition deteriorates, the patient’s family starts threatening the assigned doctor and many doctors have even reported physical abuse. Due to these events, doctors are stepping down from taking emergency cases as it’s no longer safe for our own life saviors. But as every cloud has a silver lining, this situation is no different. Unveiling in front of you the DERT App in which with a single tap, a doctor can share his name, hospital’s name, location and number with everyone in the community in form of a push notification or an SMS. This can be done when he feels there is a chance of violence or if the situation is no longer under control.
Here we bring you an interesting story where youngsters are using technology positively, to solve people’s problems, educate and save their life. We have for you Sharad Agarwal, who not only developed the app, DERT, but also helped the ones who help the world – the doctors.
In conversation with Sharad Agarwal :
1) Hey! Sharad, It’s our pleasure talking to you. Can we know a bit about you ?
Hi! I am Sharad Agarwal. I am a final year Computer Science Engineering student from Vellore Institute of Technology, Chennai. I am a cyber security enthusiast. I hail from Dehradun and both my parents are doctors, who are practising there from last 20 years.
2) How did you come up with the idea of DERT ?
Though doctors save us from the claws of death several times, they face patients who are rude and violent. They fail to understand the fact that Doctors are not Gods. There have been instances where the doctors have been attacked by the relatives of patients who died during the treatment. During such situations, doctor can notify everyone in the community about the situation and can ask for help by simply tapping a button on the app. I teamed up with my classmate Prasang Sharma from VIT, Chennai for this. DERT was finally incubated and completed in June 2016 and is available on Playstore.
3) So, how does this app work ?
This app works on cross platforms which is supported by AWS (Amazon Web Services ) web servers and MSG91’s OTP ( One Time Password ) services. We have arranged a list of affiliated doctors and their phone numbers to help them log in and verify their numbers from our server and then ensuring the user with an OTP which lets them login successfully. In case of emergency user can click on the ‘EMERGENCY’ button to send their details to everyone in the community to seek help. Thereby making it a dedicated SOS app for the closed community.
4) How many doctors are currently benefiting from this ?
As of now, every doctor in Dehradun is using this app. Dehradun, being my hometown and belonging to a medical background, I know most of the doctors there. The doctors in the Indian Medical Association, Dehradun became our first target and customers. We started with 123 doctors at the beginning and now we have 160+ doctors who are connected to the DERT app community.
5) How are you planning to expand and market your app?
We want to expand it to multiple cities across India. DERT is more than a project. We have been in constant touch with various Indian Medical Associations across the country to expand and market our app with their help. After all, it’s not just an app, it’s a movement to stop violence against the doctors.
“All cases of violence are not reported. Doctors often understand the situation of relatives who are in distress and do not report such cases“, says Indian Medical Association, General Secretary, Dr. KK Aggarwal
6) How serious are you about solving other issues which are plaguing our society?
Computer engineers not only try to solve problems, but we try to analyze them first and then find the best possible solution. We always support digital India and contributing to the society always gives us a sense of satisfaction even if we don’t receive personal benefits. We believe in the power of technology and want to serve our society and solve more issues in the near future.
7) Have your parents who are doctors themselves felt safer after using the Dert App ?
My parents feel safer now and so do other doctors. Doctors say that although they are provided with round the clock security at the hospitals, DERT has helped a lot in terms of safety and giving them confidence while working. “Anytime there is a chaos or any emergency problem, we just tap the button and we have at least 40-50 doctors standing with us at any point of time,” Sharad’s parents remarked at launch of DERT.
Connect with Sharad here :