Mangaluru: SP Dr Sharanappa Launches MARS and Emergency Number at KMC

Mangaluru: KMC Hospital organised the inauguration and launch of state-of-the-art ambulance service MARS (Manipal Ambulance Response Service) and the unveiling of the emergency number at the KMC Hospital premises, Ambedkar Circle, Jyothi here, on June 26.

The programme began with an invocation. The programme was inaugurated by Superintendent of Police DK, Dr Sharanappa by lighting the lamp along with other dignitaries on the dais. Medical Superintendent Dr Anand Venugopal welcomed the gathering.

Col (Dr) M Dayananda (MS & COO, KMC Hospital, Manipal) gave a brief talk on the MARS initiative. Addressing the gathering, he said, “Every day around 1.40 lakh people get injured in various accidents. Amongst them 3,000 people lose their lives everyday and about 15,000 people become disabled for life. The age group of most of these people is 20-50 yrs, with 70% men and 30% women; this constitutes the most employable, eligible group of our country that gets killed. In the first 3-5 minutes, 10-15% people will die, even with emergency help. There is, however, a large group of people who can come back to their normal lives if you can help them during the first 60 minutes. It also called the Golden Hour since if a patient survives during these 60 crucial minutes, he/she has a great chance of surviving, living and becoming healthy again. This is where MARS comes into play. We started this initiative in January in KMCH Bengaluru, where we have saved more than 1000 lives till now.”

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“In Mangaluru, we need to have a central accident and trauma service, which is non-existent here. So, we thought that atleast we could introduce this initiative for this city. Both the driver as well as the emergency technician are trained in emergency procedures. These ambulances come equipped with live recording and transmission equipment that sends live data to the Command and Control Centre from where specialists can give advise to the ambulance crew. This way the treatment starts once the patient is in the ambulance itself. We have introduced 17 ambulances in total under the MARS initiative. MARS will take emergency services to the next level. This service will help patients and the community at large to save precious life in the golden hour,” he added.

Superintendent of Police DK, Dr Sharanappa in his inaugural address said that he was very happy to participate in this people friendly initiative of KMC. “KMC has given a critical service in the health sector. 3.5 – 4 lakh people die in road accidents in India, the number of people injured is in millions and 30-40% of deaths are mainly due to delay in aid. In today’s society, our humanity is fading away along with our ethical values. If we see a person wounded on the street, we do not help them and just walk away. There has to be an attitude change in the way we see other human beings, and we need to offer help to people when we find ourselves near accidents and other situations.”

He further said that the medical treatment offered by ambulances has undergone tremendous transformation with the positive application of technologies like GPS, live-web casting, etc.” He also narrated the story of his friend in Hospet who was suffering from a minor respiratory issue. “He was rushed to the nearby hospital, but the hospital was not equipped with oxygen support facilities. So he was asked to shift to another hospital. The other hospital declared him dead on arrival.” He requested KMC to spread their services and other hospital to bring in essential services for the betterment of society. He wished KMC success to reach new heights in saving lives.

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Pro Vice Chancellor of Manipal University, Dr V Surendra Shetty said, “When I had come to Mangaluru in 1974, it was not known for medical treatment and medical education, but for coffee export. But, today the entire scenario has changed. Mangaluru is recognized in India and the world for its high quality medical education and excellent healthcare facilities. Due to the vision of TMA Pai, there has been a revolution in the healthcare sector in this region. The Government of Karnataka wants to start medical colleges in every district. But they have decided not to start one in Mangaluru, because Mangaluru already has excellent world class health care services and colleges. Many years back, accidents used to happen in the city and people would blame narrow roads as the cause; but today, even with wide roads, the number of accidents has not decreased. Accidents happen due to reckless driving, drunken driving, and time plays a very crucial role in saving the lives of those involved in these accidents. With the introduction of this new service, KMC has brought a big change in the healthcare sector.”

The emergency number (0824-22 22 227) was unveiled by the guests. The MARS ambulances were flagged off by the SP Dr Sharanappa. He also inaugurated the Command and Control Centre.

An audiovisual presentation on the concept and working of MARS was shown, which explained the procedures undertaken during the Pre-sensing emergency, Medical emergency location and during patient transfer, and Post-transfer phases of the MARS service. An educational skit with the social message of empathy was also enacted.

Saghir Siddiqui, Unit Head of KMCH Jyothi, delivered the vote of thanks. Udaya M Nayak (ACP of Traffic, Mangaluru) was also present on the occasion.

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