PES plans to launch air ambulance service

Project will cost Rs440 million per annum

Muhammad Shahzad March 12, 2024
Ambulances of Sindh Rescue 1122 service parked at the Provincial Disaster Management Authority office in Karachi on Tuesday. Photo: Online


Punjab Emergency Service Rescue 1122 is all set to engage two airplanes for provision of air ambulance service in Punjab with an expenditure of Rs440 million per annum.

The airplanes with a purpose of rapid responding to disaster-hit areas and transportation of critical patients from far-flung areas will be stationed in stationed in the south (Multan or Bahawalnagar) and north (Rawalpindi or Mianwali) of Punjab to cover whole of province in case of emergency.

Newly elected first female Punjab Chief Minister Maryam Nawaz had made an announcement of launch of the ambulance service within weeks in her maiden address at the Punjab Assembly.

Following her statement, Rescue 1122 department has sought services of companies that could provide the service.

Maryam's two cabinet members Khawaja Salman Rafique and Khawaja Imran Nazir on Monday even visited Rescue headquarters and among other matters discussed about the proposed air ambulance service.

Salman's portfolio as member of Maryam's cabinet also includes looking after Rescue 122 department matters also.

The airplanes to be engaged for air ambulance will be in possession of minimum capacity to accommodate one or two pilot, one paramedic, one patient on stretcher and one attendant.

These will have space and ports for running basic medical equipment such as stretcher, vital signs monitor, transport ventilator, portable suction unit, automated external defibrillator and oxygen supply system.

These air ambulances will also be registered with the Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority (PCAA) having all kind of valid approvals required for flying operations including Air Operator Certificate, Aerial Works License and PCAA 145 engineering approval etc.

The company providing airplane service will also be responsible for complete flight operations including fuel, pilots, flight crew, ground staff, spares and repair and maintenance of airplanes and insurance, hiring, trainings and licensing/ certifications etc shared an official privy to the development.

However, doctors or paramedics and medical equipment shall be provided by the Emergency Services Department.

Inspections on regular basis will be conducted to ensure airworthiness of the airplanes.

Rs440 million per annum worth services of the aeroplane will also include all types of coordination with relevant authorities, including air traffic control to ensure seamless operations.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 12th, 2024.



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