Ambulance Response Time at Three Selected Tertiary Hospitals In Malaysia: Performance of Hospital-Based Ambulance Equipped With Computerized Call Centre System
Introduction. The importance of rapid ambulance response to emergency medical crises is undeniable and early access to advanced care is a crucial to safe life. Modern computerized call centre and the hospital based ambulance are believed to enhance the quality of service delivery. However, whether it will further reduce the response time is debatable.
Methodology. A cross-sectional study was conducted in June 2012 until July 2012 at three selected tertiary hospitals in Malaysia. The aims were to determine and compare the association of response time in the hospital based ambulance and community-based ambulance and hospital with computerized call centre system and the call centre using voice only respectively. The ambulance response time was expressed in a median and interquartile range (IQR) and Mann-Whitney U test was used to determine the associations between types of ambulance and computerized call centre system versus voice only. Wilcoxon Rank Sign Test was used to assess the significance of means difference.
Result. A hospital-based ambulance had the median of 0.19 minutes while community-based ambulance had the median of 0.20 minutes (The Z score - 0.916, P value - 0.360). The hospital with computer call centre had the median of 0.19 minutes while hospital without computer call centre had the median of 0.20 minutes (The Z score - 0.816, P value - 0.414).
Conclusions. The response time of hospital-based ambulance equipped with computerized call center system is comparable in three selected tertiary hospitals in Malaysia.
Keywords: Ambulance response time; Hospital-based ambulance; computerised call centre.
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