Jan 02, Colombo: The second stage of the Suvaseriya ambulance service, which will expand island wide, will commence tomorrow at Temple Trees under the patronage of the Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe.
The free emergency ambulance service currently implemented in the Western and Southern provinces will be expanded in the other seven provinces as well.
Speaking at a media briefing yesterday, Deputy Minister of National Policies and Economic Affairs Dr. Harsha De Silva said that 209 new ambulances will be obtained for the second phase as a grant from the Government of India.
The emergency ambulance service was set up with the assistance from the Government of India in July 2016 with 88 ambulances and 500 Sri Lankan staff in the Western and Southern provinces.
Currently the ambulance service is operational in Colombo, Gampaha, Galle, Kalutara, Matara and Hambantota. It is the Government's objective to provide a broad service by expanding it island wide.
Since the inception, the 1990 Suvaseriya Ambulance Service has provided emergency service to 57,159 people and 51,795 of them have been hospitalized. Of these, 13% were patients suffering from a heart attack and 18% were injured due to accidents.
The government last year received the cabinet approval to set up the 1990 Suvaseriya Foundation by a parliament act, to continue operations and administration of the ambulance service, which is fully owned by the government.