Street directories too slow
Every day, Ambulance Victoria is there for 5.5 million people across 227,000 square kilometres. For an ambulance to provide the best outcomes for the most urgent patients, a fast and safe response is critical.
In 2013 Ambulance Victoria successfully completed the rollout of satellite navigation equipment linked to its Computer Aided Dispatch system into all ambulances in the metropolitan area, following a successful pilot project that showed the technology was accurate and fast in emergency responses.
Brett Drummond, acting group manager, Ambulance Victoria: “The most important factors for crews in terms of getting to a patient is about making sure they get there as quickly as possible and as safely as possible”.
Previously paramedics used a street directory to plan their route from their current location. Now the destination – and a clear route towards it – is automatically mapped for paramedics on the in-vehicle console.
Getting to patients faster
Michelle Murphy, clinical support officer for Ambulance Victoria, describes the benefits:
Easier to use: “The new navigation system is easier than previous systems twofold. You don’t need to enter location information into a computer before you take off. And secondly, you don’t need to look up a map to work out where you are and to plan your own trip.”
Faster response times: “One of the biggest anxieties always for paramedics is being able to find the patient and get there as expediently as possible. As a single responder I usually don’t have a colleague beside me to help navigate to the event address. Now, patient location details are populated automatically into the navigation system based on information given at the point of call. This has certainly saved us minutes on responding and having to look up where we are going to and then working out the quickest way to get there.”
Better clinical outcomes: “The integrated sat nav system is benefitting clinical outcomes for Ambulance Victoria, particularly where time is of essence. The quicker that we can get there, the quicker that we can defibrillate the patient and provide advanced life support, then the better the outcome for the patient.”
Brett Drummond concludes by saying: “The benefits to our end-users from Ambulance Victoria bringing in a satellite navigation solution are around making sure that we get to patients as quickly as possible, we get to hospital as quickly as possible and we have ambulances available for when patients need them.”