200 ambulances to be at your service soon

Published: 06 December, 2013 07:13 IST | Ravikiran Deshmukh |

State working on a war footing to introduce the vehicles, a part of its ambitious Maharashtra Medical Emergency Services scheme, by the end of January 2014, before the Lok Sabha general elections are announced

Officials at the Maharashtra state government are eagerly waiting for 200 ambulances of the Maharashtra Medical Emergency Services to be introduced for public use in the next month.

The ambulances will be available round the clock, free of cost. There are 247 such ambulances for the big cities in the state

The move takes inspiration from the Golden Hour Theory of emergency medicine, which suggests that if medical attention is provided to a person with a traumatic injury within an hour, the chances of survival increase. The Congress-led Democratic Front government is working overtime to launch the vehicles before the announcement of the general elections to Lok Sabha, which is expected around February.

The state public health department had allotted the job in March this year to BVG India Ltd, to provide the medical facility for the next five years. But the process of approval of the ambulance prototype and design delayed the entire process. While the prototype of the ambulance was approved in October, the outer design and logo was approved recently in the second week of November. Only then was the go-ahead given for serial production of the vehicles.

“According to the norms approved in the tendering process, at least 60 days are required for the first lot to hit the roads,” said sources in the know of the developments. As per the state decision, 247 ambulances will be allotted to the cities of Mumbai, Thane, Pune, Pimpri-Chinchwad, Aurangabad, Nashik and Nagpur.

Of this, the first lot of 200 ambulances is expected to arrive by the end of next month. The control room for smooth operation of these vehicles is being set up at Aundh Chest Hospital in Pune. Public health minister Suresh Shetty, who is keen on launching the scheme early, wants it to be inaugurated before the announcement of the Lok Sabha elections in order to follow the code of conduct for the polls.

Who can use it
The ambulances will be made available to people in the following emergency situations
>> People involved in road accidents
>> People suffering from critical diseases
>> Heart and brain ailment patients
>> Persons suffering from snake bites, food poisoning and respiratory diseases
>> Pregnant women in emergency situations
>> Patients of an epidemic
>> Victims of natural calamities and manmade hazards

Dial 108
The special toll-free number 108 has been procured from the national disaster relief centre in New Delhi for the service.

Rs 32 lakh
Amount spent per ambulance with advanced life support system

Rs 22 lakh
Amount spent per ambulance with basic life support system

No of doctors available on call in 

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