Durban - Condolences are pouring in for Pradeep Ashokcoomar, the principal of the KZN Department of Health’s Emergency Medical Services College who died in hospital following an illness.
Ashokcoomar, 48, who was described as a "visionary" in emergency medical services, was based at the department's college at McCord Hospital since 2014.
A resident of Clairwood, he joined the ambulance service 30 years ago in 1989.
His death was on Monday mourned by KZN Health MEC Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo who expressed his deepest condolences to his family.
Three years ago, Ashokcoomar, received accolades at the MEC’s Annual Service Excellence Awards (MASEA) for his research into the emergency transportation of sick neonates from rural areas, including the equipment and specialised care that they need.
He had recently completed a PhD on the same subject, and also had a Master’s Degree of Technology in Emergency Medical Care and Rescue (2012); a Bachelor of Technology Degree in Emergency Medical Care (2010); and a National Diploma: Emergency Medical Care and Rescue (2008).
“He was a go-getter, a visionary who wanted to take EMS into the future. He always motivated those he came across, even if he didn’t know you. It’s a real loss to the EMS community,” said KZN EMS spokesman Robert McKenzie.
Dhlomo said: “We are saddened by the passing of Ashokcoomar. He has been doing a remarkable job leading the KZN EMS College. The fact that he was an exemplary leader was attested to by the MASEA that he won recently. He clearly had a hunger for knowledge and self-development, so that he could impact positively on those around him, as well as the public at large. May his soul rest in peace. We send our deepest condolences to his family, colleagues and friends, and are praying to God to give them strength at this difficult hour.”
Ashokcoomar is survived by his wife and daughter.