A man called Anand, a carpenter by profession, could not survive the golden hour late on Tuesday evening. This was not because he was not rushed in time to a waiting ambulance but because the door of the 108 ambulance got jammed for 10 minutes and could not opened in time for him to be rushed to hospital. Those moments proved critical for Anand, the difference between life and death.
Anand was travelling on the MMTS local city train from Hitech City in Hyderabad, when he apparently suffered a heart attack and collapsed. Co-passengers reacted fast and called his family members, 108 ambulance service and also the police.
As soon as the train arrived at Malakpet station, they quickly carried Anand from the train towards the waiting ambulance. What followed was a tragedy.
A report by an expert committe on health care last month on 108 ambulances in neighbouring Andhra Pradesh had painted a dismal picture. It said that while 440 of the `108′ ambulances in Andhra Pradesh were over seven years old, 292 other ambulances (of the 104 kind) were over 10 years old. Given that both Andhra Pradesh and Telangana came from the same ambulance pool, the situation as this tragedy points out, is not very different in Telangana.
This is an emergency, something the Health minister needs to attend to on priority basis.