It was as if a war befell in Savar. First a huge and deafening sound of a building collapse and seconds after a lore of outcry and charade of life and death with a sea of blood and truncated human organs strewn in the rubbles. It was history’s worst building collapse and the first to offer selfless, charitable and all out medical response to the medical crisis ever witnessed by the nation was Enam Medical College Hospital. Dr. Enamur Rahman made up his mind within seconds. He opened all doors and corridors of his Enam Medical College Hospital and instructed the entire medical system to jump on rescue, medical response and prompt treatment of the victims “I needed everyone to be ready for patients who would be coming in. Classes and exams are all cancelled, I asked all the on call and off duty doctors to join hands. The 22 operation theatres all were prepared immediately. Pharmacies were asked to be prepared to give away medicine whatever is needed without wasting seconds. No billing, no sale. Forget any damn formality. Just give, just rush in any way possible. It’s a national disaster” called Dr. Enam. This call made history in the annuls of medical disaster management at a global scale.
Rana Plaza collapse, in Savar, Dhaka, is, indeed, the worst and deadliest man-made industrial disaster in the history of garment sector in the world. Around 1200 people died and thousands more were injured. The death toll could be more and more and deaths would have been unavoidable within hours upon rescue had there been no Enam Medical nearby. Most of the victims of the tragic Rana Plaza disaster were treated in Enam Medical College Hospital (EMCH). This represents a text-book reference of the challenge faced and responded by a medical institution in rescue, instant medical response, clinical support and rehabilitation – completely free of any charges. The Enam Medical system – with its 200 doctors and paramedics, 700 medical students, all assistants and technicians, more than 500 nurses, ambulance pool, attendants and, especially the management, under the directive of its Chairman and Managing Director, Dr. Enamur Rahman MP, made this historic medical response with high prudence, benevolence and call of humanity.
It was in effect a war field and like a battle injury syndrome Enam Medical College Hospital dedicated all its logistics, medical establishment and clinical skills to save life, following the tragic Rana Plaza tragedy of entire building collapse. The length of time between accident and admission in EMCH post haste, the unbelievable length of time between rapid admission, care, medical attendance – including operations, blood donations, critical medical care, up to discharge, to observe the numbers, types and sites of injuries to the victims, medical measures of the victims and finally to observe the status of the victims at the time of discharge – all are still in the memory of the passionate world and the countrymen.
There were several studies conducted on the rapid medical response of the Enam Medical College Hospital, mostly descriptive type of observational studies indicated the rare crisis-management of EMCH during the tragedy and its bloody aftermath, spanning the victims of Rana Plaza tragedy during the period of Day-1, that is from April to October 2013.
Emergency and Rapid Medical Response: Among the victims treated in different departments, more than 700 were admitted to the hospital on the first day of accident. Among the admitted patients totaling more than 2500 were treated in neurosurgery, orthopedics, vascular and general surgery, medicine, gynae, ENT, Ophthalmology and other departments of Enam Medical College Hospital. The treatment also included for severe injuries, among others, Fracture and dislocation, Lacerated injury, abrasion, bruises, incised wound and punctured wound, Single and multiple injury, Lower and Upper limbs, head and necks, thorax and abdomen etc.