Ola to offer cab services for hospital visits
Currently available only in Bengaluru, Ola Emergency offers rides from a customer’s home to any of the city’s 200 hospitals and vice versa. Other major cities to get it soon.
Ola has launched Ola Emergency, a new service that will allow customers to book cabs to and from hospitals. Currently available only in Bengaluru, customers can book a cab to any of the city's 200 hospitals and vice versa. Ola has said that this service will be expanded to other major cities as well.
Ola has also said that they have made their available cars equipped with marks, sanitisers and specially trained drivers to ensure that passengers are safe.
"This permission has been provided by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, to provide an essential service to the citizens in need," said B Sriramulu, Karnataka's Health Minister.
"Ola has come forward and will transport people with all cases of medical trips and emergencies that are non-ambulatory in nature," Sriramulu added.
We are bringing 'Ola Emergency' to #Bengaluru to help with trips to and from hospitals for citizens in collaboration with the Govt of KA. We thank @sriramulubjp in enabling this much needed essential mobility service during these difficult times. https://t.co/uvu1gjW84B #COVID19 pic.twitter.com/YAUXhm8AKk— Bhavish Aggarwal (@bhash) April 7, 2020
Ola in a statement said that they will ensure that the service is only be used for medical purposes that are "non-ambulatory" in nature like dialysis, chemotherapy, scheduled check-ups and physical injuries among others.
Customers will be charged a nominal fee to compensate the drivers.
"With a dedicated network of sanitised cars and trained drivers, the service will be available 24x7 on the Ola app for citizens of Bengaluru," said Anand Subramanian, Head of Communications at Ola.
On Sunday, Ola's rival Uber announced a service that will ferry people "who have been approved by local governments to travel during the lockdown period, starting with the city of Nashik".
Uber has also partnered with retailers such as BigBasket, Flipkart and Spencer's Retail to enable last-mile deliveries of essential goods.
Both Uber and Ola have partnered with state governments to "enable commuting for medical professionals and also state and central government workers that are providing aid to migrant workers".