90% of ambulances run without any equipment/oxygen.95% of ambulances have untrained personnel. 30% of mortality is due to delays in emergency care.
These shocking statistics were revealed in a recent study conducted by JPNATC, AIIMS with the support of NITI Aayog.The study also noted that the present Emergency Medical Services (EMS) conditions in India are like that of the US in the 1960’s. Unbelievable right? Well, not so much if we look around. Rampant inefficiency in EMS is a frequent sight. The truth revealed in the study has been a matter of concern for a long time now. The question, however, remains what could be done to change the grim conditions of medical emergency care in the country.
Tackling the Unorganized EMS:The unorganized nature of services leads to a haphazard response from the service providers. The utilization of technology can be a boon to solve this problem. Technologies like GPS can enable service providers to position, dispatch and track ambulances efficiently to save more lives. Similarly, access to a centralized database of patients’ medical records can help the emergency department make crucial decisions quickly.
Making People Aware:Awareness among the general public is a crucial differentiator. A swift response can be provided when people know their requirements and how to reach out for help through proper channels. Misuse of ambulances is a big issue leading to inefficiency of response. Often not being aware of what type of ambulance to call leads to not getting services that can save a life.
Pumping in Resources:Today if you try to book an ambulance the response is often delayed and unreliable. A major obstacle in providing reliable and quick EMS is the lack of resources. Well-equipped ambulances, trained medical professionals, technological support etc. are fundamental to any emergency medical response but still, their lack is a harsh reality. To change this, most efforts should focus on consolidating the ground-level infrastructure.
A patient who receives basic care from trained professionals and is transported to the nearest healthcare facility within 15-20 minutes of an emergency has a greater chance of survival. The future of emergency care in India lies in employing well organized, consolidated and technology-oriented solutions. If such solutions are utilized well, EMS can become far more well-structured and responsive in no time, saving thousands of more lives every year.