India sees at least one death due to road traffic accident (RTA) every four minutes. Many precious lives can be saved if RTA victims can be given medical attention in time. In a one of its kind initiative, Columbia Asia Hospitals, in association with the Bangalore Traffic Police, today announced the launch of Good Samaritan Award, to encourage the Good Samaritans, who have helped accident victims, get medical attention and saved their lives.
Speaking on the occasion, R Hitendra, Addl. Commissioner of Police, said, “It is a good initiative to recognize the Good Samaritans who have helped people during accidents. These people inspire millions. Moreover events like this will motivate many more people to come forward and extend a helping hand to accident victims.”
Now, we have a law in place, to help people who save lives in RTAs. Going forward, these Good Samaritans would not have to bear any civil or criminal liability for helping accident victims, added Hitendra.
Last year, 740 people lost their lives to road accidents and another 714 people incurred fatal injuries, in Bangalore alone. This year is no better. Within the first four months, already 248 victims have fallen prey to accidents and lost their lives. That apart, 237 people have suffered from fatal accidents. With more people falling prey to RTA with every passing year, it is high time that people come forward to help the accident victims get medical attention at the earliest.
Highlighting the importance of receiving medical attention within the golden hour for any fatal accident victim, Dr. Nanda Kumar Jairam, Chairman and Group Medical Director, Columbia Asia Hospitals, India, said, “It has been established that 50 % of fatalities from road traffic accidents can be avoided through intervention during the golden hour, as chances of survival are high with medical aid within this time. However, the fear of getting involved in a police investigation and being subjected to rigorous legal procedures often stops bystanders from helping road traffic accident victims. Now, the Good Samaritan guidelines are encouraging people to come forward and help the victims without any fear of being subjected to any criminal or civil liability.”
Stressing on the importance of knowing Basic Life Support (BLS) techniques, Dr. Jairam, added, “BLS goes a long way in saving lives during emergency situations. The steps that we take while attending an emergency can have a deep-rooted impact in saving the life of a patient. Considering the road traffic accidents and other medical emergencies, ideally every citizen should be trained in BLS.”
Addressing the media, Dr Sunil Rao, Vice President, Operations (South), Columbia Asia Hospitals, India, said, “Caught amidst busy traffic, how many of us would make an attempt to help the road traffic accident victim, get him the required medical attention, and try to save his life? Mostly, as passers-by, we will halt for a minute to glare at the situation before driving by to our destinations. However in Columbia Asia Hospital, we have got several cases, where life of RTA victims were saved due to timely intervention of a Good Samaritan.”
“Columbia Asia has been actively promoting the cause for Good Samaritans for the last one year by reaching out to the community. The hospitals in Bangalore have trained over 1000 people in BLS techniques across communities including traffic police, teachers, students, journalists and corporates in the past six months. BLS training is also being imparted by other Columbia Asia Hospitals in cities including Mysore, Pune, Ahmedabad, Gurgaon, Ghaziabad and Patiala,” said Dr. Rao
To encourage many more such Good Samaritans, we at Columbia Asia Hospitals, conceptualized the Good Samaritan Awards. We will be having our first ever Good Samaritan Awards in a month’s time. Going forward, every year, we will be awarding Good Samaritans who have played a vital role in saving life of any accident victim, he added.
“Good Samaritans can nominate themselves, or can be nominated by their friends and family, neighbors and colleagues for this award. One can logon to www.goodsamaritanindia.com to submit their details for nomination. Also people can approach the help desks of any of the Columbia Asia Hospitals to submit entries. The last date for submitting entries will be July 15 2016, explained Vinay Kaul, Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing, Columbia Asia Hospitals, India.
Ernst Young is our knowledge partner for this initiative. Based on the framework created by them, a panel of elite judges will vet each of the entries and give scores. The candidate with the combined maximum points will be the winner. There are 15 awards to be won in the Individual and organization categories and the winners will be felicitated at the Good Samaritan Awards ceremony to be held in Bangalore in August, Kaul added. The hospital authorities are hopeful that this Good Samaritan Awards will motivate citizens to take a step forward and help RTA victims get medical attention.