Thursday, 18 February 2016

Lifesaver 108 Service a Life Changer in Punjab

Lifesaver 108 Service a Life Changer in Punjab
Started four years back, 108 Emergency Medical Services has delivered much more than what was expected. For every Punjabi, life without 108 service is not possible because this is one service which can handle any kind of medical emergencies.

The medical service has seen all kinds of SOS calls and managed to deliver results. The service is not only restricted to accidents or cardiac emergencies but also calls for animal and snake bites, farm accidents, pregnancy cases and even suicidal cases. In other words this service helped in giving the people assurance that they had one service for any kind of emergency, be it health or otherwise.

The scheme was launched under the PPP model in collaboration with Mumbai based Ziqtiza Health Care Ltd. It’s an ambitious project as 20 districts are connected with more than 240 ambulances. 108 is a success story in itself and people trust it’s genuinely and believe their lives have got simpler (

The project named ‘Atal Swasthya Sewa’ provides for a toll free number which can be dialled from any landline or mobile number and this helpline has saves lives of hundreds of people. The outstanding feature of the service is that it is available round the clock.

The service is also high on technology as Ziqtiza Health Care Ltd. has purchased ‘Emergency Dispatch System’ from InfoTrack which enables the response teams of ZHL to reach to an emergency in no time. It also has the advantage of showing the geographical location of the vehicles.

As per Sweta Mangal, CEO of Ziqitza Health Care Ltd. the 108 Ambulance Service has made a remarkable change in the lives of people in both urban and rural belts of Punjab and has been possible only with the support of the Punjab government.

Each ambulance is equipped with a paramedic and the drivers have also been trained to handle basic first aid and assist the paramedic. More than 5 lakh lives have been saved so far.

On lines of Punjab, Chandigarh will also be getting the service soon. As per the plan, there will be 10 ambulances which will be stationed in different parts of the city and will provide services for all kinds of medical emergencies as in the case of Punjab.

BOX 1: A Mobile App that connects you to 108
A mobile application has been developed that will connect you to the nearest hospital in case of emergency within minutes. The application called ‘MUrgency’ which is already very successful in other countries will now be operational in the state. This location based application works on the lines of cab operators and will be able to alert its users with the nearest ambulance available in case of an emergency.

BOX 2: Health Care on Wheels (Source: HT)

  • 240 Total number of '108' ambulances in Punjab
  • 5 Ambulances (approx) per 1,000 square km area
  • 5 Phone calls (approx) received per day by each ambulance
  • 70km Average distance travelled by each ambulance daily

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