Materia Medica Malaysiana

May 9, 2008

100 ‘state-of-the-art’ ambulances for hospitals

Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 11:38 am

NST: KUALA LUMPUR: State-of-the-art ambulances will help save more lives with computer technology that allows readings of a patient’s vital signs and electrocardiograms (ECGs) to be sent ahead to the emergency room.
The Health Ministry is spending more than RM30 million on 100 ambulances which will be stationed at government hospitals nationwide.
Emergency room staff can help medical assistants to treat patients while they are on their way in the ambulance, rather than wait till they reach the hospital.
“Pre-hospital care is important. Therefore the number of ambulances has to be increased, and existing ones upgraded to provide quality service to patients,” said Health Minister Datuk Liow Tiong Lai, adding that he had already requested funds to order another 100.
He said, in addition to the 200, another 400 ambulances would be needed in the near future to meet the country’s needs.
Currently there are 568 government ambulances serving hospitals across the country, excluding the 50 owned by the Malaysian Red Crescent Society (MRCS).
He said this after launching the Red Crescent Bazaar at Lake Titiwangsa.
MRCS is celebrating Red Crescent Day and its 60th anniversary.
He also said ambulance services could be improved through better inter-departmental co-ordination and communication.
“The sharing of information is crucial to expedite the process of transferring victims from the accident site to the ambulance.”
In his speech he said the ministry was looking at changing its current analog communications system to a digital one, enabling control centre staff to monitor ambulance movements.
He said the 26 emergency call co-ordination centres set up nationwide last year had reduced ambulance response time to 30 minutes.
Previously there were reports of ambulances taking an hour to reach patients.

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