Himachal Pradesh got its first woman ambulance driver in Nancy Katnoria. Hailing from Hamirpur in the state Katnoria has become the first woman to drive an ambulance and provide transport service to patients. She is 22-year-old.
Katnoria was first trained in driving the vehicle at the school of the Himachal Road Transport Corporation (HRTC). Earlier, the trained women drivers were inducted to drive buses. Often women are the butt of driving jokes and jobs pertaining to these fields to date have been dominated by men. But more girls like Katnoria give hope that in the future more women will take up such important roles.
Meet Nancy Katnoria
For Katnoria, the want to become an ambulance driver was a dream to serve society. “I am jubilant at joining the 102 emergency ambulance service at the Nurpur civil hospital, and fulfil my wish,” she said.
The 102 ambulance service was launched on November 14, 2014, and has 125 operational ambulances with GPS and medical equipment. It offers round-the-clock service for pregnant women, newborn babies and their mothers.
The Patna-based Medswan Foundation which is a private ambulance service company recently started 102 and 108 services in the state. Ishan Rana, the district in charge of the company, said that by opening this new service, they have hired not just drivers and support staff but also taken on the task of training the youth.
In July 2020, the company GKV EMRI, the ambulance service provider had decided to halt their services in the state because of increasing losses and unresolved issues with the state government. During that time, they had 1,135 employees which included 588 drivers, 46 support staff and 29 call centre executives, amongst others. The reason for their shutting down ranged from lack of timely funds, amongst others. In the MoU signed by the state government and the service provider, they had stated the creation of infrastructure for the service by the state.
They provided service to police, medical emergencies, pregnant women, trauma cases, amongst others.