Ministry of Health Passes Amendments To Make Way For Ambulances
In November 2019, the Health Minister of Sindh at an event organized by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in collaboration with Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto Institute of Science and Technology (SZABIST) Karachi announced that they had successfully made amendments to Sindh’s Provincial Motor Vehicles Act 2018 introducing provisions establishing a duty upon drivers to give way to ambulances and emergency motor vehicles.
The provisions include revised definitions of ambulances and emergency vehicles, and their obstruction. Different sections have been added to the Act pertaining to establishing a duty to make way, staying clear of designated lanes, exemptions given to drivers of emergency vehicles and penalties to be imposed on persons violating the said provisions.
Health Minister, Dr. Azra Fazal stated at the event that the amendments were a part of Sindh Government’s drive for better healthcare in the province and ICRC’s campaign against violence towards healthcare workers in Pakistan. The Health Minister was joined by representatives from ICRC, President of SZABIST, Director General Motorway Association, representatives from Jinnah Post Graduate Medical Center (JPMC), Director of Indus Hospital and representatives of Apna Institute, who engaged in a discussion about the importance, scope and applicability of the amendments.
ICRC is keen on working towards better healthcare facilities in Pakistan and has made it one of the focal points of its campaign on “violence against healthcare workers”. It claims that this is an effective start to the initiative and they plan to work with medical and educational institutes of Pakistan and enact more effective laws and policies to combat violence against healthcare workers in the country.
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