Minister hints at legislation to address issue of ambulance obstruction

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: The Federal Minister for National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination Saira Afzal Tarar has said that the ministry is ready to extend all its support to initiate legislation to address the issue of ambulance obstruction in different cities of the Country with support of all the stakeholders.

“It is painful to hear every time when someone could not survive for not being able to arrive at the hospital in time,” the minister said while addressing at launching of nationwide campaign titled “PehleyZindagi: Give Way to Ambulances-Give Way to Life” in a ceremony held on Friday at a local hotel in Islamabad.

“Ambulances are not merely vehicles; they are symptomatic of a struggling life for which every minute is important,” she added.

The minister said that the ministry is fully cognizant of the hurdles being faced by the ambulances staff in their lie saving efforts to bring patients to the hospitals in time.

Furthermore, Saira Afzal Tarar said that public-private partnership is indispensable for implementing road rights and creating awareness among drivers across the Country to respect lifesaving operations by ambulances.

The minister said that only government cannot achieve this objective but all the public and private organizations must join their hands to disseminate awareness about road rights among drivers.

As part of “PehlyZindagi”, a public pledge campaign starting from October to December will use TV, radio and social media to urge citizens to respect and give way to ambulances by pledging their commitment.

The campaign also seeks to sensitize people to the issues faced by ambulance staff to bring about behavioural change among the public and policy makers.

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Over 30 partner organizations from across the Country are supporting the campaign which will carry on until December 2017.

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