Bhubaneswar: Taking a cue from Delhi’s Kejriwal government, the Odisha government has made treatment of accident victims free of cost.

The chief secretary, Asit Tripathy, Saturday directed all the government and private hospitals to give treatment to the accident victims free of cost.

“As per the government orders all the private and government hospitals must provide the best quality life saving treatment to the accident victims for first 48 hours free of cost”, the chief secretary has said while reviewing the ‘Golden Hour Management’ system along with the health secretary Pramod Kumar Meherda at a high level meeting, here on Saturday. He directed that the Golden Hour Management system be strengthened with definite standard of procedure (SoP).

Tripathy also directed to bring all the private and government ambulances under the umbrella of one common call center to provide earliest service to the victims.

The State health & family welfare department would soon issue a SOP in this matter. Guideline for stabilizing the patients in the ambulance itself on their way to trauma care centers would also be issued by the department.

Presently 512 number of ‘108-Ambulances’ and 19 fire station ambulances are providing emergency service during the ‘Golden hour’. Besides, National Highway Authorities of India have also deployed one ambulance for a stretch of 50 kms of NH. Along with these the private ambulances run by the private hospitals, charity institutions and corporate houses are also in operation. A first hand preliminary estimation shows that there are around 1562 such private sector ambulances in service.

 It was decided in the meeting that ‘technical standards’ for registration of an ambulance would be prepared by the health department keeping in view the National Ambulance Code. This would specify the equipment, paramedic staff, medicines and other life saving gadgets for an ambulance. Each ambulance would also have one GPS tracking device for indicating its exact location and movement so that necessary assistance and instructions could be given to the personnel in the vehicle as and when required. The commerce & transport departments would register an ambulance only when it satisfies the required technical standards.

Principal secretary commerce & transport G. Srinivas, transport commissioner Sanjeeb Panda  along with senior officers from concerned departments and Golden Hour consultants participated in the discussions.