The State Government has augmented its fleet of ambulances by addition of a hundred new ambulances and has pressed them into operation on the auspicious occasion of 150th birth anniversary of the Father of Nation, Mahatma Gandhi, informed S. Balbir Singh Sidhu, Health Minister Punjab.“Ensuring timely movement of patients to healthcare facilities is one of the main pillars of fighting any pandemic; patients who turn COVID 19 positive require this as a key support as the time taken to reach a hospital has been critical in ensuring saving of lives “,said Health Minister.In order to cater to all citizens of the state and to reduce the response time taken by an ambulance in reaching a patient, Punjab has been progressively increasing the fleet of its ambulances in the wake of the pandemic, said he. As of now, the government hospitals have around 400 ambulances, including the 242 Dial 108 ambulances already available with the state. To address and strengthen the aspect further, Punjab went ahead with procuring 17 ALS and 60 BLS ambulances in the month of August. These new ambulances have been provided to each district hospital and they are helping transferring COVID patients between various levels at both government and private hospitals, he informed.Health Minister informed that the state government has approved procuring 100 more BLS ambulances to augment the fleet further. Apart from these, 5 ALS, 6 BLS and 22 smaller ambulances have also been ordered.Appreciating the commitment shown by ZEE Entertainment Pvt. Ltd. in partnering to fight the pandemic by donating 20 ambulances , 12 of which have been flagged off today with 4 each at Jalandhar , Ludhiana and Patiala , Health Minister said that these ambulances will not only augment the government's effort but will also go a long way in saving lives . These ambulances are smaller in size, Maruti & Mahindra make, so will assist the health teams to reach congested areas of cities and cater to patients, added Health Minister.