1034 Ambulance Service

The LHWs working at community level are the strongest connection between the communities and health facilities. In order to further strengthen the linkages and to reduce the second delay i.e. delay in provision of transport service for obstetric cases, a special initiative of rural ambulance service was launched on 22nd May, 2017. At the moment, 220 ambulances are available on the ground. Currently, approximately 800 pregnant women are being transferred on daily basis. This ambulance service caters to the following:

  • Pick up of pregnant women from household and drop at the nearest functional basic EmONC center (24/7 BHU or RHC)
  • Transfer of complicated cases from basic to comprehensive EmONC facilities
  • Drop back service from BHU to household for cases discharged during night shift (7PM-7AM)
  • Transfer of complicated SAM child from OTP to stabilization center
  • Transfer of complicated pneumonia / diarrhea cases from 24/7 BHUs and RHCs to nearest THQH / DHQH.

The ambulance service received an overwhelming response during the first month of its launch. Therefore, the Department has decided to procure additional ambulances:

  • 207 more ambulances will be on road by February 2018
  • 50 special ambulances for hard to reach areas will be on ground by end of March 2018

Thus, a total fleet of 477 ambulances will be on road by April 2018.

To ensure timely availability of ambulances and to maintain a standard vehicle maintenance protocol, the task of call response center (emergency helpline 1034) has been outsourced to a renowned Telecom Operator (Ufone) while the task of vehicle maintenance including provision of drivers has been outsourced to a renowned rent-a-car service (Mystic Tours). Both the vendors are fully onboard and maintaining the agreed standards.

Standard Operating Procedures for ambulance service

The rural ambulance service operates through the call response center (1034). The ambulance driver cannot move the ambulance on his own from one location to the other without intimation from the call response center. The following SOPs are observed:

  1. LHWs, LHVs or community members call at 1034 and request for ambulance service
  2. Call agent identifies the address / location of the patient by searching nearby landmarks on the dashboard (based on Google Maps)
  3. Call agent identifies the nearest available ambulance, calls the driver and explains him the address.
  4. Call agent calls the client / caller and informs them about the driver’s name and contact details
  5. An automated SMS is generated and sent to driver including the contact details of client and name of health facility where client has to be dropped. Moreover another automated SMS is generated and sent to the client including name and contact number of the driver.
  6. The call response time for call center is less than 15 seconds.
  7. The average time taken by driver to reach the client is 45 minutes.