The Delhi government approved the "Home to Hospital" scheme to provide free ambulance services in the city. The decision was taken in a cabinet meeting chaired by chief minister Arvind Kejriwal.
Health department officials said, people can call an ambulance at home for critical illnesses such as injuries of chest, abdomen, pelvis or spine, crush injuries or any burn caused by an electric shock.
The scheme will be provided to people by Centralized Accident & Trauma Services (CATS).
CATS was set up in 1991 and was being used mainly for the transportation of accident victims, referral cases, pregnant women, and victims of sexual assault.
"At present, CATS has 155 ambulances. We plan to procure 110 new ambulances besides setting up of a modern and state-of-the-art control room to support the new initiative," a senior official in the health department said. He added that additional manpower will be provided for the new ambulances as well as human resource deficit in the existing 155 ambulances and control room.
Dr Shakti Gupta, who heads the hospital administration department at AIIMS, said the proposed increase in number of ambulances would be of great help. "In order to cater to additional needs such as home care we need to augment the infrastructure as well," he said.