‘Saving Lives’ was established as a long term ‘millennium’ project by Dr Peter Patel in 2000-2001. The millennium year was the year of review of our investment in humanity. Initial review established that the region did not have any disaster management plans and most of responses to disasters were reactive. There was significant dependency on international aid to manage disasters and delayed aid contributed to high numbers of mortality and severe outcomes from injuries.

A special team led by Dr Peter Patel comprising of West Midlands Ambulance Service, a Trauma specialist from City Hospital, Birmingham and Royal Life Saving Society went to Pune, Maharashtra to carry out assessment of disaster response and gaps. The review team identified and confirmed the following problems in the system:

  • Absence of Pre -hospital care.
  • Absence of emergency medicine and trauma care.
  • Absence of effective planning or strategy to deal with disasters or major crisis.
  • Absence of properly equipped ambulances and trained para-medics.
  • Absence of disaster management and medicine planning and preparedness.

All this against the background of (study year 2001):

  1. more than 100,000 deaths from natural disasters in last 12 years
  2. 3.5 million rendered homeless in same period.
  3. 95000 lives lost in RT and railway accidents annually and about 250,000 seriously injured.

Study Report: Feasibility Study Trauma Management Pilot Project at Ruby Hall Clinic, Pune, India. Recommendations and Report.

Author: Stephen Evans MIPR, Principal Officer
Commissioned by: ‘Saving Lives’ Rotary Club of Birmingham – Dr Peter Patel