Schools told to make emergency medical plan

The government is set to make it mandatory for all the states to bring in place an emergency medical plan for all the schools to deal with “any untoward incident”.

A decision has been taken by an empowered committee for mid-day meal scheme of the Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry in this regard. The states will soon be asked to formulate emergency medical plan for school by the end of this year. The development of an emergency medical plan for schools would entail creation of facility to provide immediate medical assistance to children in case of any emergency.

“Many schools are located at a place which is far from the nearest hospital or health centre. The states will have to make suitable arrangements to ensure that if any untoward incident takes place in a school, time is not lost in rushing an affected student to the nearest hospital and basic medical assistance is immediately provided in case of emergency,” sources told Deccan Herald.

This comes over a year after more than 20 schoolchildren were killed consuming contaminated food served under the scheme at a school in Chapra district of Bihar in July last year.

Soon after the tragedy, the ministry issued an advisory to the states suggesting a host of measures to improve the implementation of the programme which also included development emergency medical plan to deal with such incidents. More than a year elapsed since the ministry issued the advisory, only Odisha has so far prepared an emergency medical plan for schools in the state.

At its meeting a fortnight back, the empowered committee, headed by HRD Minister Smriti Irani, took note of the non-serious approach of the state governments and decide to make it mandatory for them to develop an emergency medical plan for schools to deal with “any toward incident”, sources said.

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