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‘Govt to set up first-aid centres at all highways, toll plazas’

Special Secretary at the Road Transport Ministry, said that the government is in the process of providing first-aid centres at all toll plazas and highways
New Delhi: IK Pandey, Special Secretary at the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, said on Wednesday that the government is in the process of providing first-aid centres at all toll plazas as well as extending it to highways. This will ensure initial medical support in case of road accidents.

‘Need to have first-aid centres along highways, toll plazas’

Speaking at Road Safety programme on the theme ‘Trauma Care - A National Mission,’ organised by FICCI, jointly with IRF, Ministry of Road Transport and Highways and WHO, during the 31st National Road Safety Week, Pandey said, “Trauma care is not given much importance in our country as compared to other countries.” He added that we need to adopt the procedures of faster turnaround in case of any road accident on toll plazas and highways as prevalent in many developed countries. “We need to come out with statistics and adopt an action plan to bring about the change in our system,” said Pandey. He added that out of the total road accidents in the country, almost 40 percent of these happen on the national highways, hence there is a need to take care of lives on the highways.

‘Post-trauma care needs more concerted efforts’

Pandey said that the ministry is the nodal ministry to guide and direct the 3 ‘Es’, Engineering, Enforcements in the Motor Vehicle Act and Education. “But the post-trauma care needs more concerted efforts. This cannot be one ministry’s task but a combined effort of all stakeholders.”

‘By-standers should be trained’

Dr Rajiv Garg, DG (HS), Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, said that in case of road traffic injuries, preventive measures take a long time to initiate. Improvement in trauma care can bring in significant change in road traffic mortality and disability, and reduce road-related diseases. “The ministry understands an urgent need for manpower training in post-crash trauma care. The training of by-standers with first aid skills will encourage them to help the roadside victims and alley the anxiety of police prosecution which acts as a barrier to effective by-stander response.” Payden, Deputy WHO Representative to India, said that there is a need to create a network of all ambulances in the country with one number so that support and patient care becomes much faster. This will also allow police ambulances to reach the accident spot on time during the golden hour. She added that police should also be trained with basic first-aid help and regular trainings should be conducted to enhance their skills.