[Helicopter emergency medical service missions at night: 2 years of experience in the Dutch Regional Emergency Healthcare Network East].
until further notice
SourceNederlands Tijdschrift voor Geneeskunde, 154, (2010), pp. A2149
Article / Letter to editor
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Nederlands Tijdschrift voor Geneeskunde
SubjectNCEBP 4: Quality of hospital and integrated care
OBJECTIVE: To study whether there are differences between day and night in the dispatch of helicopter emergency medical services (HEMS) and in their response and travelling times, medical treatment and transport of patients. DESIGN: Retrospective, descriptive study. METHOD: All data on helicopter emergency medical service (HEMS) missions available 24/7 from Nijmegen, the Netherlands, during 2007 and 2008 were collected. All missions in this period were divided into daytime and night-time missions. Next, the reason for dispatch, the duration of distinct times during the mission, the method of transport of the HEMS team, medical treatments and patient transport were compared. RESULTS: In 2007 and 2008 the HEMS team was dispatched 2891 times. 1107 patients were treated during daytime and 479 during the night. The mean distance to the incident scene was longer for night missions. During night-time the HEMS team was dispatched more often for road traffic accidents and violence-related accidents but less often for falls, drowning, horse riding accidents and people becoming trapped (non-traffic-related). There were no differences in medical treatment given by the HEMS physician between day and night, but fewer patients were transported by helicopter at night. Travelling times and on-scene times were only slightly different. CONCLUSION: The number of dispatches of the HEMS team at night was higher than expected, but night missions were cancelled more often due to weather conditions than missions by day. Prehospital times and operations of the Netherlands HEMS differed slightly between day and night.
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