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J Korean Soc Emerg Med > Volume 19(2); 2008 > Article
Journal of The Korean Society of Emergency Medicine 2008;19(2): 153-160.
Severity-Based Analysis of Prehospital Transportation Time Using the Geographic Information System (GIS)
Ki Hun Hong, Kwang Jung Lee, Jin Taek Kim, Dong Hun Lee
1Department of Emergency Medicine, College of Medicine, Ewha Womans University, Korea.
2Department of Emergency Medicine, Chung-Ang University Yongsan Hospital, Korea.
3Fire-Department of the Daegu Metropolitan City, Korea. emdhlee@empal.com
Response time is an important factor in determining the quality of prehospital Emergency Medical Services (EMS). Our objective was to analyze the Daegu Korean Fire Department's ambulances' response time by use of the Geographic Information System (GIS) and to suggest general factors for quality improvement of EMS.
We retrospectively reviewed computerized ambulance calls of the Daegu Korean Fire Department. During the period from July 2006 to June 2007, computerized ambulance calls could be pinpointed geographically by the GIS. Patients were divided into injury and disease groups. And each group was subdivided into emergency and non-emergency groups at triage. We reviewed the EMS response time, response velocity, distance from 119 safe center to scene, and distance from scene to hospital.
Of 46,606 patients, 27,825 patients could be pinpointed geographically by the GIS. The mean response time was 5.5+/-18.9 minutes. Among injury patients, there were no significant differences between emergency and non-emergency groups in mean response time and mean response velocity. In disease patients, however, emergency group response time was shorter than for the non-emergency group, and response velocity was faster for the emergency group. Distance from 119 safe center to scene and from scene to hospital was greater among all total patients for the emergency group than for the non-emergency group.
Using GIS, we evaluated response velocity as a measure of the quality of prehospital EMS. We found that in injury patients, prehospital triage and transportation were not properly managed. We suggests that EMS could be more effective if GIS is used as a tool for the improvement of EMS quality.
Key words: Emergency Medical Services, Reaction Time, Geographic Information Systems
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