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Winning abstracts selected through 999 EMS Research Forum peer review process and presented orally or by poster at Ambex 2005

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WINNER OF THE EMERGENCY MEDICINE JOURNAL (EMJ) AWARD FOR MOST ORIGINAL RESEARCH

001 tHE IMPACT OF SHIFT WORK ON EMERGENCY MEDICAL DISPATCHING

S. Roshanzamir, A. Heward1, E. Glucksman.1London Ambulance Service

Introduction: Healthcare professionals are required to work to consistently high standards 24 hours a day, 365 days a year necessitating shift work to be employed. Shift work is often perceived to result in disruption to the worker, manifesting itself in terms of sleep, health, and social disruption, as well as job performance, standards, and safety, with substantial differences in fatigue identified between day and night shift workers.

The London Ambulance Service NHS Trust (LAS) receives 1.1 million medical 999 emergency calls annually. To deal with these the LAS employs emergency medical dispatchers (EMDs), who use the AMPDS call prioritisation software, to triage emergency calls into an order of clinical need. In line with the evidence presented above, concerns have been raised about the potential for reduced levels of care to be delivered on night shifts.

Use of AMPDS is measured through “compliance”, which measures the correct application of the protocol against the call taken. Low compliance has been shown to result in reduced levels of accuracy in identifying the patients presenting condition.

It is hypothesised that working at night is associated with a decrease in AMPDS compliance.

Sources and data analysis: Compliance data for 176 EMDs were collected for October …

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