BY OWN CORRESPONDENT
Getting an ambulance anywhere in Zimbabwe will now be as easy as a click on your mobile phone following the launch of Vaya Ambulance service today.
The launch follows research by Vaya – a subsidiary Cassava-On-Demand Services – that revealed that there were over 130 active ambulances in the country operated by the government, mission hospitals, local authorities and private players.
The company said it intends to register every single ambulance on the Vaya Ambulance platform.
It said its digital platform would connect tracking devices to the ambulances, enabling real-time tracking on any road in the country.
“Once a person calls for an ambulance, the platform will offer the nearest ambulance and also show the nearest hospital or trauma facility.
“And in addition, relatives will be able to follow the journey of the ambulance on their phone as it comes to them and also as it heads to the hospital emergency,” said Cassava Smartech Zimbabwe CEO Eddie Chibi, speaking at the launch of the service in the capital Harare.
The event was attended by several ambulance service providers, including Harare City Ambulence, Netstar, EMRAS, St Johns Ambulance, MARS, Rubatsiro Ambulance service, Belvedere Medical Centre Ambulance service among many others.
Chibi said part of Vaya’s plans were to include air ambulance services that would ferry a patient within Zimbabwe or even out of the country.
“The digital platform is designed to create efficiency in the allocation of a scarce resource and amplify availability,” said Chibi.
Private Ambulance Services Association of Zimbabwe chairperson Craig Turner, applauded the launch of Vaya Ambulance, saying for the first time, the Vaya platform would bring together ambulance service providers in a coordinated and efficient manner that would help patients and save more lives.
“Our 130 ambulances will be like 1 300 ambulances once they are all on the platform. We will also know which parts of the country have limited resources and redirect the ambulances to those areas,” said Chibi.
He said thousands of lives are expected to be saved following the launch of the service.