Updated: May 13, 2021 6:12:37 pm
The Greater Chennai Corporation Wednesday launched 250 special ambulances to cater to patient movement from their residence to screening centres, COVID Care Centres (CCC), hospitals, etc to decrease the burden on the 108 ambulances. KN Nehru, Minister for Municipal Administration, flagged off the initiative.
In the initial phase, 50 of the customized car ambulances would ply, said Corporation Commissioner Gagandeep Singh Bedi on Thursday.
Addressing reporters, Bedi said, “Not every patient requires oxygen support, but they need to reach the COVID care centre/Screening centre soon. If they avail the service of 108 ambulances, then it may not be available for those who are in serious condition. So, we decided to come with this initiative. Arrangements like putting a thick plastic sheet separating the driver and the passenger are made. We are making sure that the driver is vaccinated. Our aim is to set up these special ambulances each in 15 zones across the city.”
Bedi further added that this will be managed by zonal officers who would analyse every day the positive cases in their zones and make necessary arrangements to transport these patients to centres or hospitals. He said patients who want take a CT scan or need other requirements can make use of the special ambulances over their personal or relatives vehicles which may lead to further spread of Covid-19.
“We will initiate this step-by-step and analyse the plus and minus and make suitable changes accordingly,” he added.
Senior IAS Officer MA Siddique, who is the special coordinator for Covid-19 prevention, said today that to avail the special ambulance service, patients need to contact the helpline numbers of each zone and the officials will make the necessary arrangements. He added people should immediately notify the corporation if they experience any symptoms. “Fever Service Worker (FSW) will visit every two or three days once. If people experience any Covid-19 symptoms, they can inform the FSW and they will contact our doctors and provide the necessary medicine at the spot itself,” said Siddique.
Bedi further said that the zonal tele-counseling centres will be linked to the Covid-19 war room set up at the Directorate of Public Health. He added that a separate team comprising IAS officers are chalking out plans to increase the oxygen supply to the city. He said the 300 oxygen concentrators received from other countries for Covid-19 management has been distributed to hospitals like Kings Institute in Guindy, Government Kilpauk Medical College, Communicable Disease Hospital in Tondiarpet, etc and they are shifting the concentrators to hospitals based on their requirements.
“We are trying to increase the number of oxygen beds in every possible way,” he said.
The Corporation has distributed 30,000 medical kits to all the 15 zones in the city. This is part of the new strategy the corporation is going to deploy to break the chain. A medicine kit will be provided to anyone who takes an RT-PCR test to ensure they don’t wait to be treated until their tests results arrive as people may tend to get in contact with others.
The civic body is also set to roll out “oxygen parlours” for Covid-19 patients in three regions across the city. Each region will have a 100-bed hospital with an oxygen facility. This is done to ensure patients get the oxygen supply immediately till the time they avail the bed facility in hospitals.
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