Statistics from Altmetric.com
If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.
1 CAN ‘TREAT AND REFER’ PROTOCOLS BE SAFELY INTRODUCED INTO THE AMBULANCE SERVICE?: RESULTS OF A CONTROLLED TRIAL
Winner of the Joint Royal Colleges Ambulance Liaison Committee (JRCALC) award for Research Most Likely to Affect Practice
H. Snooks1, N. Kearsley2, M. Halter3, J. Redhead4, J Dale2. 1Clinical School, University of Wales Swansea, Singleton Park, Swansea;2University of Warwick;3London Ambulance Service NHS Trust;4Ealing Hospitals NHS Trust
Background: The number of 999 calls is rising, and some callers have been shown to have non-urgent needs. Evidence concerning the effectiveness of alternatives to the standard 999 service is lacking, although previous studies have highlighted clinical risk for some non-conveyed patients.
Objective: To evaluate the safety of ‘Treat and Refer’ (T&R) protocols for ambulance crews, allowing them to leave patients on scene, with advice or onward referral.
Methods: Treatment protocols were developed by a clinical panel and implemented in one station May - August 2000. Outcomes of care for patients within defined illness codes and attended by trained crews were compared with similar patients attended by crews from a neighbouring station. Pre-hospital, A&E and GP records were collected.
Results: 23 protocols were developed. 260 patients were included in the intervention arm and 537 in the control arm of the study. There were no age / sex differences between groups although intervention patients were more likely to have been attended during the week (χ2 = 4.28, p = .05) and daytime (χ2 = 6.75, p = .01). After follow up at A&E and GPs there were 62 patients for whom no information was retrieved.
Seventeen of the protocols were recorded as used for 110 patients, by all 8 trained crew members. Three patients in each group were admitted to hospital within 14 days of their call, and were judged by clinical reviewers to have been …