Chennai had highest number of users of 108 ambulance network in 2023

Data show that 19,19,504 people across the State benefited from the service in 2023. This is an increase of nearly 1.44 lakh compared to 2022, when 17,74,832 used the service. Officials say a total of 1,353 ambulances are being operated in T.N.

Updated - January 10, 2024 05:15 pm IST

Published - January 10, 2024 01:01 am IST - CHENNAI

Officials say a total of 1,353 ambulances are being operated in Tamil Nadu. File photo

Officials say a total of 1,353 ambulances are being operated in Tamil Nadu. File photo | Photo Credit: S. Siva Saravanan

Chennai had the highest number of beneficiaries who utilised the 108 Ambulance Services in Tamil Nadu during 2023. A total of 1,05,961 people utilised the services in the city, followed by its neighbouring district of Tiruvallur, while Coimbatore took the third spot.

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The 108 Ambulance Service saw an average of 5,259 users per day in Tamil Nadu in 2023. According to officials, a total of 1,353 ambulances are being operated across the State. This included basic, intensive care, and infant ambulances, and first-aid bike ambulances. Data show that 19,19,504 people across Tamil Nadu benefited from the ambulance service in 2023. This is an increase of nearly 1.44 lakh compared to 2022, when 17,74,832 used the service across the State.

An analysis of last year’s data showed that of the over 19 lakh beneficiaries in 2023, 5,07,071 were pregnant women. A total of 3,34,527 people injured in road accidents were assisted by the service — an average of 917 persons per day. As many as 1,19,738 heart patients also benefited. The network served 10,943 children, while a total of 22,450 infants were transported to hospitals for treatment in special ambulances for infants in 2023, said M. Selvakumar, State Head of Operations, EMRI Green Health Services (GHS), which operates the ambulance network in Tamil Nadu.

M. Mohamed Bilal, regional head, Chennai, EMRI GHS, pointed out that regular monitoring of the deployment of ambulances by the task force, district managers, and coordinators had helped in improving the services.

“We keep monitoring the response time. The vehicle should move within a minute of being assigned (to a case). This is being monitored through the global positioning system,” he said.

The ambulance network has a response time of eight to 10 minutes in Chennai, while the State average is 13 minutes, he said. “We have deployed vehicles near hotspots (places prone to road accidents). We regularly verify the hotspots to update locations. Real-time monitoring with field-level operations has ensured better reach of services,” he added. In fact, the 108 ambulance team played a crucial role during the recent Cyclone Michaung in Chennai and the unprecedented floods in Tirunelveli and Thoothukudi districts. In particular, the team rescued 138 pregnant women during the cyclone. To improve the service’s reach, Mr. Selvakumar said there were plans to deploy boat ambulances during floods.

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