Ahmedabad Emergency Service by EMRI- 108

The Emergency Management Research Institute's (EMRI) 108 Service for immediate pre-hospitalization healthcare needs is spreading its wings far and wide. Come August, top-notch pre hospitalization emergency care delivered through a fleet of more than 400 ambulances would be made available in all the 26 districts of the state.

The service is currently available in almost all districts in Gujarat including Ahmedabad through the toll free number 108. The pre hospitalization emergency care provided by EMRI is free and the patient is admitted to a hospital of his or her choice.

More than 400 hospitals in the state have partnered with EMRI and have agreed to stabilize the patient brought in, free of charge. Elaborating about the expansion program, Venkat Changavalli, CEO, EMRI said, "From August this year, we will be able to attend to 2,500 emergencies and save 150 lives every day in Gujarat. This has been made possible because of the constant support given to EMRI by the Gujarat Government."

A matter of concern for the EMRI, however, is the high percentage of ineffective calls that are made to the toll free number. Gobind Lulla, executive partner EMRI said, "Ninety-one percent of all calls are ineffective. In other words, they do not concern an emergency. This amounts to about 4,500 calls every day. I urge the people to dial 108 only in case of a genuine emergency and not just to check the number or for fun."

EMRI is a non-profit organization based on the Public Private Partnership (PPP) model with around 95 per cent of its funding coming from the Central and state governments. At present, the service is available in Andhra Pradesh through a fleet of more than 500 ambulances. Launched by Chief Minister Narendra Modi, the service has so far attended to more than 11,000 emergencies, and saved more than a 1,000 lives in Gujarat.

Currently based at the Civil Hospital Sola, EMRI will shift to its new campus by August this year, slated to be set up in the 10 acre site at Kathwada provided by the state government. Changavalli said, "We are trying to ensure that we start our two year post-graduate course in emergency care in association with Stanford University."

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