that you happened to witness or a near and dear one suffering some medical emergency? If the answer to
that was yes, then you would agree with me about the necessity of being equipped with the basic knowledge
of emergency care. And if your answer was no, then it becomes all the more important to learn these
medical emergency skills, so that you never have to undergo such a state of helplessness.
IIT Madras boasts of having a one-of-its-kind Disaster Management Committee (DMC) whose mission is to
ensure that our campus is comprehensively disaster resilient and to imbue safety consciousness among
its residents. DoMS plays a very important role within the DMC, as, not only, its student head, Chirag Jain,
belongs to the MBA batch of 2011-13, but also, 4 of the 10 members in the committee are DoMScions.
DMC, IIT Madras, in association with Amenity Lifeline Emergency Response Team, better known as ALERT,
organized the Emergency Medical Care workshop to empower the people associated with IIT Madras
towards handling any medical emergency. ALERT is a NGO that helps aid this cause - to reach out to the
society, by identifying and addressing the issues concerning physical and emotional welfare.
The EMC workshop was hosted in DoMS on 6th October. It witnessed a large participation from students,
faculty and staff alike. The volunteers of ALERT are people from different walks of life, who are doing their
bit to create awareness amongst the people. Most of them have a full time job elsewhere and contribute
towards ALERT's activities in their spare time. Their motto is "Compassion without awareness is merely
a good intention whereas, compassion with awareness leads to action". This was the main idea that they
tried to instill among the participants of this workshop. The emphasis was on the importance of having
compassion and the intention to help those in a medical emergency, and not just the skills to provide medical
care. We were taken through the initial steps to be followed in the wake of any medical emergency, how to
assess the seriousness of the crisis and the medical techniques that need to be applied in each situation.
We were also provided a demo and hands-on training in CPR (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation) and Heimlich
maneuver, which are two very vital techniques useful in resuscitating the victims. The volunteers also gave
the general information on how to treat the victims for fractures, bleeding, choking, etc as well.
Even though people may have an intention to help, one major reason for the lack of responsiveness among
public towards accident victims is due to the legal implications of the same. Many a times, those who help
the victims are interrogated and asked to be witness by the police. Fearing such complications, people do
not come forward to help victims. The ALERT volunteers also educated the attendees about how to tackle
such issues which might occur during such emergencies. Overall, the workshop was highly motivating and I
am sure, the next time when one of us is faced with such dire medical crisis, we would not hesitate to help,
at least to best of our abilities.
The EMC workshop was a real eye opener to the importance of medical aid in those first few minutes which
can mark the difference between life and death.
Roshni Anna John
Class of 2014