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April 28, 2021, 07:05

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The district doctor of the polyclinic number 115 Krasnopresnenskiy district T. Samokhina goes to call the patient at home. Main Archive of Moscow

Initially, the police were responsible for providing first aid to those who felt unwell.

The birthday of the Moscow ambulance is April 28, 1898. However, information that medical assistance was provided to the victims on the streets has been preserved since the first half of the 19th century. Documents testifying to this are stored in the Moscow Glavarchive.

The first ambulance stations were created in the spring of 1898 at two police stations: Sushchevsky and Sretensky. In those years, it was the police who were responsible for providing first aid to those who felt unwell in public. Each unit had a police house, where, in addition to prison rooms, reception rooms for the sick were located. Police doctors, paramedics and midwives worked here.

However, back in August 1845, the Moscow Chief of Police Colonel Ivan Luzhin issued a special order on the procedure for providing medical assistance by city doctors to suddenly ill and injured. The document preserved in the Glavarkhiv says that “for the most convenient delivery” of medical care to sick people, the city was divided into five departments according to the number of hospitals. Each of them was assigned at least three closest parts, acting as analogues of modern districts.

Doctors and their assistants were on duty at the hospitals. They were forbidden to go away under any pretext (except to summon private bailiffs or other police officers). The doctors were called only when the police doctor who was at the unit was absent. If an examination was required, then the private bailiff had to wait for the arrival of his full-time doctor.

The sick or injured were sent to the doctor on duty at the nearest hospital, which was assigned to the area and equipped with the necessary surgical instruments.

In a medical institution, a schedule of doctors’ shifts in departments was compiled. These lists were kept at every police station. If a fire broke out in the city, the doctor on duty had to immediately come to the scene and stay there until the arrival of the police doctor of the unit in charge of the area.

The change of doctors on duty took place at eight o’clock in the morning. They also had to draw up a report addressed to the Moscow Chief of Police on the condition of the patients and list emergency cases. These reports were certified by the duty officer and his shift was handed over to private bailiffs for sending to the authorities. Thanks to such reports, it was possible to track the development of epidemics and the number of accidents.

Today Ambulance station named after A.S. PuchkovaIs the largest medical organization in the city. It includes 60 substations and 107 posts, of which 20 posts are located on major highways, 10 on the Moscow Ring Road and 77 on the territory of hospitals and polyclinic medical organizations. At the Station of ambulance and emergency medical care named after A.S. Puchkova employs 2,500 doctors, 8,400 specialists with secondary medical education.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and or sentence structure not be perfect.

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