Ahmedabad, Jun 2 (PTI) Gujarat Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel on Wednesday dedicated 25 new ambulances to the '108' ambulance service in the state.
Speaking at the flagging off ceremony in Gandhinagar, Patel said the state government has set a target of adding 75 new ambulances to the existing fleet within the next two to three months, and of these, 25 have been dedicated.
The '108' service was launched in a public private partnership mode in 2007, when Prime Minister Narendra Modi was the chief minister of Gujarat, said Patel, who also handles the health portfolio.
As per the World Health Organization's norms, there should be one ambulance for a population of 1 lakh. And considering this, Gujarat should have 650 ambulances.
With the constant additions to the fleet over the years, the state now has over 800 ambulances, much higher than the WHO criteria, Patel said.
The entire fleet of 800 ambulances are managed by a central control room in Ahmedabad.
Over 1.22 crore patients have been admitted to hospitals by the 108 service so far in the state, the minister, adding that the response time of the service is just 20 minutes.
More than 2.15 lakh COVID-19 patients were admitted to hospitals by 108 ambulance service, he said.
In the coming days, the government is planning to modernise the service by installing more sophisticated equipment and devices in the ambulances, Patel added. PTI PJT ARU ARU