The world’s first portable disaster hospital, a complete “Made in India” offering – the BHISHM ‘Arogya Maitri Health Cube’ - was presented to Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, earlier this week who appreciated the initiative. Attempts are being made at collaborating with Bill Gates’ foundation to popularise the offering, Health Ministry officials in the know said.

While India has not received any commercial orders for the portable hospital kit, the country is already supplying the BHISHM Cube to neighbouring nations like Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Bangladesh, sources said.

In a post on micro-blogging site X, Bill Gates said, his foundation would look at opportunities for continued partnership with the Union Health Ministry.

“It was great to see digital health innovations like the Arogya Maitri Disaster Management Cube-BHISHM and discuss our shared commitment to leverage Indian research and technology to eliminate TB, sickle cell, and maternal anemia with Mansukh Mandaviya,” he wrote.

BHISHM Portable Hospital

Arogya Maitri Cube is a completely made-in-India and each cube cage has three frames. Each of the frames accomodates 12 mini cubes. So one cage (or cube) can fit in 36 mini cubes, with each have structural elements like spinal boards, OT tables and an air evacuation kit.

Mini cubes are durable and water-proof and are designed to open “in different configurations”. They can be carried by a single person – a messenger bag, as a strolley or as a briefcase – or even transported through drone. The cubes also come in ergonomic design as per size and human weight carrying capacity.

According to to senior Health Ministry officials, each mini cube is packed with functional kits to cater to specific medical function and specifically relevant to the requirement in a disaster or conflict or war scenario. Some of the kits that can be packed include pain and anti-biotic kits, shock kits, chest injury kits, airway kits, bleeding kits, among others.

The complete health cube takes some 12-odd minutes to set up.

There are two Master Cubes too. The first master cube has a cooking station (self sustainable for 48 hours for 100-odd survivors, and a survivor aid station; while the second master cube has an advance surgical station – which include having an on-field OT station and items than can carry out 10-15 basic surgeries per day.

The system also integrates AI and data analytics.

In a post on micro-blogging site X (formerly Twitter), Union Health Minister, Dr Mansukh Mandaviya wrote about meeting Bill Gates and sharing insights. “We discussed a wide range of subjects related to healthcare including the promotion of digital health, affordable diagnostics, etc. He also observed & appreciated India’s BHISHM Cube initiative, an indigenous mobile hospital,” the Minister wrote.