We often hear about unfortunate railway accidents occurring. and most of the time, victims succumb because no timely action was provided or medical facilities were not well-equipped at the railway stations.
A timely initiative has been taken up by Central Railways in the Mumbai division, after being instructed by Bombay High Court to make medical aid available at the railway stations that could be administered immediately as and when required.
Charging patients at ₹1 for medical facilities, five Emergency Medical Rooms or EMRs will be set up in stations that fall under the Central Railway (CR) zone within two months, as reported by TOI.
The railways, at no cost, will provide space for clinics and that’s not just it.
The best part is that the medical attention that will be extended by the clinics will cost just ₹1.
Not only for railway accident victims, patients with routine illnesses can also go to the clinics as doctors will man the EMRs round the clock. Not only will this benefit the regular patients, but more for those who are dangling by a thread for their life!
With plans of initial EMRs to be based at Kurla, Ghatkopar, Mulund, Wadala and Dadar stations, the facilities will also provide services of specialists in dermatology, diabetes and gynaecology. Plans of pathology labs and pharmacies have been formalised too, that will be offering their services, in the form of tests and medicines at discounted rates.
“15 more stations will be established, depending on when the first set is ready, expectedly in a couple of months”, a senior CR official told TOI.
As directed by the high court, the EMRs will fall under public-private partnership (PPP) model, wherein the Railway authorities will not be required to pay for any expenses apart from providing basic amenities like water, electricity and space.
Other major expenses, i.e. the manpower and equipment, will have to be borne by the agency setting up the facility. “There will be MBBS doctors present in these clinics round the-clock”, one of the doctors who is part of the agency setting up the facility, told TOI.
Nonetheless, the agency has been granted the liberty to carry out private practice or even set up pharmacies to recover the costs in exchange for immediate action and free medicare for accident victims.
According to reports, Jitesh Matalia, Divisional Railway User’s Consultative Committee (DRUCC) member said, “It is a noble concept that will help save accident victims, and also help Mumbaikars who have tight schedules”.
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