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Ethiopian government creates new plan to reduce vehicle-related deaths

In an effort to reduce Ethiopia's high road-traffic accident death toll, the government is working to improve emergency medical care and health insurance for its people, IRIN reports.

According to the World Health Organization, more than 70 people die out of every 10,000 motor vehicles accidents annually in Ethiopia. The average across other sub-Saharan African countries is 60 deaths for every 10,000 accidents.

"At least one person dies out of [every] five car accidents occurring in this country," Bamlaku Alemayehu, inspector of Ethiopia's National Road Safety Coordination Office, told the publication. "Most of these victims die due to a lack of proper medical services, such as getting immediate medical assistance on time."

Many humanitarian groups and researchers believe that inadequate communication between medical workers, hospitals and insurance companies are accountable for the high number of fatalities, especially in rural areas. According to the source, in urban and pastoral areas, most victims are checked out by bystanders who have no medical training.

With the launch of the National Road Safety Strategy Plan in July, government officials now hope to reduce vehicle-related fatalities by half by 2020.

The plan works to supply 800 new ambulances across the country and employ 30,000 new emergency health workers to provide medical aid to those in need. 
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