Materia Medica Malaysiana

March 24, 2007

Make sure it is an emergency

Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 9:04 am

Star: KUALA LUMPUR: The majority of the 33 million outpatients treated yearly at government hospitals and health clinics go to the accident and emergency (A&E) department but only about 30% need emergency treatment.
This means the A&E facilities are swamped with patients and those who really need urgent treatment are forced to wait, said Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek who appealed to Malaysians against taking advantage of the A&E facilities just because it was convenient.
“If they have an itch, they come to the A&E. And those who need swift treatment sometimes have to wait,” he told reporters yesterday after opening the 4th Asian Conference on Emergency Medicine 2007.
He added that patients with non-emergency conditions should instead make the effort to seek treatment during the daytime at the outpatient department.
On emergency medicine in the country, Dr Chua said pilot projects such as using motorcycles to be the first responders during an emergency or accidents and call centres to streamline hospital services and other agencies such as the St John’s Ambulance were being carried out.
He said that ambulance drivers were being trained to have basic first aid skills so that patients could be treated before reaching the hospital.
On a case at the Seremban Hospital where a man alleged that his month-old nephew nearly suffered brain damage and paralysis because of the careless treatment given by staff, Dr Chua said the matter would be investigated.

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