Accident victims, Trauma Centres and required facilities

Recurring road accidents, usually on hilly roads in Jammu Province, are taking aheavy toll of precious lives besides causing injuries to many others travelling in the concerned vehicles or being pedestrians and hit on the roads itself. Why such accidents take place, what are the common causes of these heart rending accidents and who could be possibly directly held responsible fornot putting in placethe required mechanism, who were indulging in dereliction in not enforcing proper traffic discipline and rules on such roads and thus not following the set procedures, why road worthiness and fitness of vehicles like issues were taken so casually are all connected issues very critical to these accidents. Not impossible to have such frequent accidents minimised if not prevented in absolute terms and all the above related matters are being dealt with and mentioned each time through these columns when any such accident unfortunately takes place.
We also have been voicing concern aboutnot keeping the public abreast of what Action Taken Report was there in response to enquiries instituted in respect of such tragic accidents. That apart, the fact of the matter is that in such road accidents, many lives could be savedin respect of those passengers/occupants of the ill fated vehicles which receive grievous injuries and are vulnerable to succumb to injuries and blood loss due to the time factor involved in carrying them to the nearest hospital. Not only that, even if such victimswere taken to nearest Hospital quite swiftly , still in the absence of the requisite medical facilities available at such Hospitals or Trauma Centres , the injured run the risk of losing their lives. Such a scenario, therefore, warrantsto have such a systemin respect of medical help and “dedicated facilities” and ”dedicated Intensive Care Units at these treatment centres which can save the lives of the accident victims.
In other words, whether even the existing Hospitals in districts under the jurisdiction of which an accident can take place have the facilities and the expert (Specialist) medical personnel easily available to treat and save the injured victims – if analysed- would project a position which is far from satisfactory. Less saidabout the Trauma Centres which were set up with much hype and hope of saving the grievously injured accident victims without affording running the risk of otherwise carrying them to District Hospitals. However, it is a matterto be noted that at least, the UT Government appears now tobe seized of the matter of not only the frequently occurring road accidents but is mulling about creation of “dedicated facilities” at the district level Hospitals also so that timely help could be made available to the victims during the critical moments post mishaps.Accordingly, a full assessment of the functioning of and facilities available at existing 8 Trauma Centres needs to be made so as to initiate remedial measures for their proper functioning . What is required more importantly is the access of the victims of accidents to such Trauma centre which means that they should remain open throughout since no one knows when, where and of which intensity, an accident can occur.
The decision of the UT Government in arranging setting up of more Trauma Centres than the existing number at those areas which are accident ”prone” or with added vulnerability in Jammu and Kashmir, is a welcome decision. However, a word of suggestion would be that not only are such Centres needed to be opened strictly as per the set guidelines but must be provided with the requisite infrastructure especially the qualified medical personnel so that in case of emergency regarding an occurred accident, the injured victims get the needed treatment quickly. In a situation when the Health and Medical Education Department is not in a position to post the required number of specialist Doctors especially in Neurology , Radiology and Orthopaedics Departments in Jammu province Hospitals, how can Trauma Centres be ”equipped” with these specialists which these centres very much need, must however be looked into and resolved.
We, however, are conscious about the limitations of all such measures in place and going to be added and improved upon, especially keeping in view the uncertainties about the accidents but within those limitations too, lot of ”dedicated facilities” can be arranged so that as far as possible, more and more road accident injured victims could be saved.