|My father the late Padmashree Dr Lalji Singh died due to a heart attack on 10th December 2017 at Varanasi. He was travelling from Varanasi airport to Hyderabad. Had he received the wheelchair assistance that he had pre-booked, timely medical intervention by a medical doctor, oxygen support or an ambulance to rush him to hospital his life could have been saved. It was a full 2 hours since when basic medical intervention was asked for at the airport to when it was provided at the distant hospital at Banaras Hindu University. An ambulance was not even made available and he was transported in a private vehicle as he struggled to breathe during those critical hours. Doctors at the hospital say that had primary care been provided within the first hour at the airport Dr Singh could have survived.
If this can happen to a world renowned eminent scientist, a former Vice Chancellor of Banaras Hindu University, a Padma Shri recipient and that too in the nation’s Prime Minister’s constituency then what chance does the common man have under such circumstances?
Each week millions fly through our airports including senior citizens, yet there is no guaranteed provision of basic medical support in the event of an emergency. Airports are geared towards caring for emergencies arising from inbound traffic (aircrafts flying into the airport) but what about passengers flying out. Once we enter the airport our movement is restricted including exit. It should be the responsibility of the Airport Authorities and Airlines to look after the well being of passengers once they arrive at the airport.
Over the years there have been numerous instances of failures to provide timely medical intervention at airports resulting in deaths which could have been avoided and this number is rising.
The Ministry of Civil Aviation and Airport Authority of India need to mandate and make available across ALL civilian airports in India –
1. Medical Doctor – available at all hours the airport is operational
3. Minimum medical support (such as oxygen cylinders, and defibrillators)
4. Trained medical personnel
5. Standard Operating Procedures to care for medical emergencies not only for inbound but outbound passengers as well.
I appeal to everyone to sign this petition to impress upon the Ministry of Civil Aviation and Airports Authority of India to mandate these facilities and standard operating procedures across ALL civilian airports in India. No one should have to lose a loved one under these circumstances.