HCMC – Some 500 taxis and passenger cars in HCMC have been requisitioned as ambulances to transport Covid-19 patients to hospitals as new cases of community transmission are running high.
As the number of new cases has been escalating, all ambulances of public and private medical centers have been used but have not kept up with the demand, news site VnExpress reported.
On July 27, the city mobilized taxis of the Mai Linh Group to support the 115 Emergency Center. These vehicles were equipped with oxygen cylinders, ventilators, test kits and medical workers.
A representative of the Mai Linh Group said 80 out of its 200 taxis are being used to transport Covid-19 patients. The drivers of these taxis stay at hospitals and medical centers and get vaccinated against Covid-19.
Early this month, more than 200 passenger cars of the Phuong Trang Group were also converted into ambulances to transport Covid and other patients. These vehicles had their seats removed to accommodate medical equipment.
Drivers are equipped with protective gear and medical knowledge. Earlier, the firm mobilized 250 cars to transport medical workers to areas on lockdown, quarantine centers and field hospitals to take samples for Covid testing.
In addition, 40 vehicles with 10-45 seats each of the Saigon Passenger Transport JSC have been mobilized to support the local healthcare sector. In May last year, the company used 30 of its vehicles to transport people to centralized quarantine facilities and those completing their quarantine. Currently, these vehicles are being used to transport Covid patients.
Doctor Nguyen Duy Long, director of the 115 Emergency Center, said the enhancement of vehicles transporting Covid patients had helped ease pressure on the healthcare sector.
The city has established five field 115 satellite emergency stations in districts 12, Binh Tan, Binh Chanh and 11 and Thu Duc City. Each station has 20 ambulances and 280 medical workers.
Vehicles of the Phuong Trang and Mai Linh groups have been allocated to these stations.