Situation Response to emergencies is well known to be poor, delayed and inadequate in most developing nations. Consequently, fatalities on the spot of road crashes and in local communities have remained a worrisome issue in most African countries.
Objective The study seeks to review First Callers Response Action in Emergencies Initiative (First C.A.R.E), a rescue initiative being implemented by PATVORA, a Nigerian based non-governmental organisation to enhance community participation in reducing road traffic and community related injuries and make recommendations on its usefulness or otherwise.
Method First C.A.R.E concept was examined and investigations were carried out in locations it has operated. 150 community members including road users and leaders were interviewed.
Analysis In 6 months of first C.A.R.E existence, it conducted training on first aid (FA) administration in 20 locations of 12 communities. An average of 25 volunteers received training with two FA boxes given to each location. Review of report on injury related incidents by trained volunteers in 3 months after FA training indicated that 60% of victims of injury related incidents received FA attention. All community leaders commended first C.A.R.E and 80% of road users interviewed confirmed its usefulness. Inadequacy of FA boxes was noted.
Conclusion First C.A.R.E has proved to be efficient and cost effective measure for saving preventable lives especially in impoverished communities with limited healthcare facilities. Initiative conforms to 2007 Accra Declaration and is replicable in similar African communities. Scaling up initiative requires distribution of more FA boxes.
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