KalingaTV News Network
Bhubaneswar: Odisha Health & Family Welfare Minister Pratap Jena flagged off 26 ambulances here on Thursday.
According to reports, the ambulances will be stationed in nine districts of the state. Sambalpur, Balangir and Kandhamal districts have been allowed five ambulances each while Boudh district has got four of the emergency vehicle.
Likewise, three ambulances have been allotted for Nayagarh and one ambulance each for Sundargarh, Deogarh, Gajapati and Sonepur districts.
“By the commencement of these 108 ambulance services, we are hopeful that we will be able to give the people best of facilities,” said Jena during the flagging off ceremony.
Chief Minister Patnaik had earlier dedicated 92 additional ambulances to the people of the state on December 23 last year and on the very day had flagged off 24 ambulances in the first phase. The remaining 42 vehicles of the fleet will be rolled out in the last phase across the state.
The Government of Odisha through exclusive State budget funding have made provision for additional 92 Ambulances under the 108 fleet to further improve the performance of Emergency Ambulance Service in the State, particularly in tribal districts, and to meet the increasing demand for this service.
The State Government has also provided for upgradation of 28 Basic Life Support (BLS) ambulances to Advanced Life Support (ALS) ambulances, out of the State fund, to strengthen the existing ambulance fleet.
The 108 Emergency Medical Ambulance Service was launched in the state on March 2013 and is presently operated with a fleet of 444 vehicles covering all 30 districts. It is providing emergency medical services free of cost to the people of the state. The fleet has 388 ‘Basic Life Support’ (BLS) and 56 ‘Advanced Life Support’ (ALS) ambulances.
In addition to the 108 Ambulance Service, the state has in position a fleet of 500 ambulances under ‘102 Ambulance’ Service for transportation of pregnant mothers and sick infants.
As per a press note issued by the State Health & Family Welfare Department, over 35 lakh people of the state have been benefited from the ambulance service till date. This intervention has been instrumental in significant reductions of both the Infant Mortality Rate (IMR) and the Maternal Mortality Ratio (MMR) in the state.