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Amaravati: Corona care norms cause ambulance delays

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Ambulance

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CM recently launched 1100 ambulances, but only 217 have been allotted to Covid care Aarogyasri Trust CEO says it is not the scarcity of ambulances, but patient management norms that are delaying ambulances

Amaravati: Non-availability of ambulances is compounding the woes of people affected by Covid-19. It may be recalled that Chief Minister launched nearly 1,100 vehicles for the public health care purpose recently. But the government allotted only 217 ambulances for the Covid services. The remaining ambulances are being used for other medical emergency services.

Officials in the medical and health department said that if all the ambulances are converted into coronavirus vehicles, then they could not be used for transportation of the other patients. On the other hand, the corona positive cases have been rising daily in thousands, making the situation unmanageable.

For instance, on Tuesday alone nearly 8,000 fresh positive cases were reported in the state."Delay is due to patient care management, not due to non-availability of the vehicle," explains Annam Mallikarjuna Yadav, CEO, YSR Aarogyasri Trust. He said that the local medical team would contact the Covid positive patient immediately after informed of test result. They will assess the patient's condition, collect the information on associated medical problems, find out the comorbidity.

He further explained that the Chief Minister was ready to allot 217 more ambulances for Covid services if needed. "As the positive cases have been increasing, the management of the health care system is changing from time to time. For instance, it has been decided to send an APSRTC bus to a village if there are 20 or more cases. The medical team along with the medical equipment will visit the village and provide treatment," Mallikarjuna Yadav said.

He also added that the government broadly divided the patient care into three categories based on the severity of the patient. If a patient is exhibiting normal health problems, of below 50 years of age, then he would be asked to go into home isolation. If he is more than 50 years of age and is suffering from corrodibility or lung-related problems, then he would be shifted to the Covid Care Centres. If the patient's health is in danger and emergency treatment is needed, then he would be shifted to the Covid Hospital. All this is a big exercise before we transport a patient from home to hospital, he explained.

At the same time, the Aarogyasri Trust CEO maintained that the distance to be covered by the ambulances would be roughly around 20 to 30 km only. He also explained the new challenge that the work load posed by the mounting workload on medical staff due to high number of new positive cases for the last one week. Yet, he said, it is not the problem with the vehicle availability, but before that the procedure involved in patient care should be followed.

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