Our emergency medical services are still sorely lacking (II)

A rather critical article on our ambulance services in FMT

George told FMT that just 48 hours ago, a 67-year-old man from his church near here collapsed after washing the church van and when he called for an ambulance, they delayed by asking too many questions.
“They came late but what was even more saddening was that they were ill-prepared and were confused as to what were the normal emergency procedures.
“They automatically declared him dead although there was still a pulse and only then decided to rush him to the nearest hospital but he died on the way,” he said.
George added that this was no ordinary matter as people’s lives were at stake and if the public cannot even rely on adequate ambulance services, then their tax money was going to waste
He also highlighted an alarming fact that during the past three years, Cassa received over 900 complaints concerning the quality of ambulances.
“This number is extremely worrying and we [Cassa] have raised many issues but the authorities have done nothing so far,” he said.
Asked about the nature of the complaints, the Cassa president said it ranged from the quality of treatment provided, the quality of medical aides who were at the scene and the time that it took for ambulances to arrive.

As commented by one of the doctors in the Dobbs forum:
Our ambulance service is far from ideal. I’ve had the experience of waiting for more than half an hour for an ambulance to get to one of my patient’s house for a cardiac arrest. Needless to say, the patient did not survive. There are many factors contributing to the “shoddiness”. 1. Most paramedics following the ambulance are not well trained to carry out emergency resuscitation. 2. Sometimes, they do not even come equip with drips and resuscitation equip. 3. We still have not make use of technology for the paramedics to communicate directly with the ER doctors. 4. Public apathy to our ambulance – some drivers do not even give way to the ambulance. 5. Bad traffic jam esp in the city – huge challenge to overcome this.

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Our emergency medical services are still sorely lacking

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Malaysian physician, haematologist, blogger, web and tech enthusiast

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3 comments on “Our emergency medical services are still sorely lacking (II)
  1. city nurhonda says:

    To be fair, Malaysian drivers were one of the best to give way for the ambulance. I have seen ambulances that was not equipped with anything except for having a driver who doesn’t even know CPR. The public should all know how to do CPR.

  2. I just read this post. There are 2 issues highlighted here: 1) ambulance response time (call-to-arrival) time is slow. It should be expected to be within 10 minutes or less, ideally. But our Malaysian traffic is far from ideal and the attitude of our Malaysian drivers are not yet matured enough. That’s why if you reserve an ambulance lane, the ambulance lane will be clogged up with cars as well. 2) The ill-trained paramedics – it is true that many of the paramedics who are working in the emergency departments are not specifically trained with post-basic training in emergency medicine. More could be done and this is under the jurisdiction of the Paramedic board in Malaysia

  3. Winston says:

    As 1Malaysia, shouldn’t we be Numero Uno in everything?
    But the truth is: We are last in everything!!!