News : Helpline 108 Flooded with Unwanted Calls
Ranchi, India, Nov, 2017 -- It only tells how badly State requires more and more helpline numbers, especially active and effective ones, for different services so that call attendants sitting to pick calls for one of the most essential services like 108 Ambulance do not have to answer calls asking for how to obtain an Aadhaar Card, or where to complain for power cut, etc.
The 108 Ambulance service launched in State by the President of India Ram Nath Kovind and flagged off by Health, Medical Education and Family Welfare Department Minister Ramchandra Chandravanshi from RCH (Namkum) on Statehood Day on November 15 this year has started delivering positive results as far as reaching out to the one in need and taking them to the nearest assigned hospital at the earliest is concerned.
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At the same time, the trouble which started right on the day the service was launched is not coming to an end even after a week. "We received over 60,000 calls in our integrated call centre in Ranchi during November 15-22. But the problem is that only 20 out of 100 calls have been genuine ones in which they required someone fatally injured or suffering with life threatening situation to be taken to nearest hospital. Rest all 80 calls have been made to seek some other kind of services which has nothing to do with health services. This has remained our greatest challenges so far, as a lot of enquiry and nuisance calls do affect the genuine callers in need," said Ziqitza Healthcare Ltd (JHL) CFO Manish Sacheti on Thursday, the company which operates the service in State.
He said that the 24X7 operational call centre received as many as 7,000 calls on average everyday in which genuine callers asked help in case of road accident, head injury , pregnancy related transfers, inter facility from basic to equipped hospitals so far.
"Ranchi has remained on the top of receiving calls while we received least number of calls from Palamu as of now," added Sacheti.
Interestingly, call attendants at call centre started couple of months back exclusively for issues of farmers and agriculture too had to face similar issues of calls coming for assistance other than agriculture. "But this is more an awareness issue which has direct connection with literacy and awareness level of callers. Most of them, except absolute pranksters, happen not to be literate or aware enough to understand that they can’t get their electricity issues resolved at a call centre for ambulance," said Ranchi Civil Surgeon Shivashanker Harijan on Thursday.
Notably, the government is in process of getting all 329 assigned 108 Ambulances on roads by March next year. JHL has started operations with 33 ambulances so far with nine ambulances in East Singhbhoom, eight in Ranchi, six each in Garhwa and along NH-33, and four in Palamu.
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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About 108 Ambulance Services:
108 is a free telephone number for emergency services in India, currently operational in 17 States ( Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Chattisgarh, Goa, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Meghalaya, Odisha, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh) and two Union Territories (Dadra & Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu.) The 108 Emergency Response Service is a free emergency service providing integrated medical, police and fire emergency services. The service is a public-private partnership between state governments and private EMS providers. 108 was introduced by Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy chief minister of Andhra Pradesh, Telangana for the first time in India. 108 is also functional in Punjab Odisha, Maharashtra, Bihar Kerala. Till November 2014 this service handled 5.4 lakh emergency cases in India.
Published: Monday, November 27, 2017
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