400 kms in six hours: How Kerala rushed to the aid of 15-day-old infant

In a coordinated effort that spanned seven districts, Child Protect Team, an NGO, associated with traffic and police officers to ensure uninterrupted transfer of the child on road.

Published: 17th April 2019 03:59 AM  |   Last Updated: 17th April 2019 11:36 PM   |  A+A-

The 15-day-old baby which was brought to Amrita Hospital in Kochi from Muller Hospital in Mangaluru. The infant is under observation | ARUN ANGELA

By Express News Service

KOCHI: Displaying perfect coordination, the state machinery came together to rush a 15-day-old infant, who was undergoing treatment at Father Muller Hospital in Mangaluru, to Amrita Hospital in Kochi in an ambulance on Tuesday. Covering 400 kms in six hours, the ambulance sped along the NH with the infant who was battling for life and reached the hospital in time for the urgent valve surgery. The journey was made easier after news about the ambulance started spreading on social media.

Though the initial plan was to take the infant to Sree Chithra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology (SCTIMST) in Thiruvananthapuram, it was soon decided to treat the kid at Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences (AIMS) in Kochi, reducing the distance the ambulance had to cover. The decision came in the wake of the government’s offer to bear the complete medical expense of the child under the Hridyam scheme.

In a coordinated effort that spanned seven districts, Child Protect Team, an NGO, associated with traffic and police officers to ensure the uninterrupted transfer of the child on road. “We received co-operation from residents and vehicles on the road which considerately made way for us. This allowed us to reach our destination faster than we planned. We began the journey at 10.30 am and reached the hospital at 4.30 pm,” said the ambulance driver Hasan who is from Kasargod.

The child was referred to SCTIMST, Thiruvananthapuram by doctors at Manguluru Hospital. The infant’s parents Saniya and Mitha from Kasargod made arrangements for the travel in the ambulance. State to bear the expenseHealth Minister K K Shylaja announced the state would bear complete expenses of the child for treatment at AIMS. 

“The initial plan was to bring the child to the SAT Hospital. But as it would have jeopardised the life of the child, it was decided to admit the child to AIMS Kochi. The government has ensured the child is being given adequate medical attention,” said Shailaja.

“The baby’s condition is very critical which is why immediate surgery was recommended. Since the parents could not afford the huge sum of money required for surgery, the doctors referred the case to the Government Hospital at Thiruvananthapuram. The state government’s offer is a huge relief,” said a member of Child Protect team.


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