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FSD accepts Ombudsman report

January 10, 2013
The Fire Services Department says it agrees in principle to the Ombudsman's investigation report on ambulance services, released today.
In view of the Ombudsman's proposal on optimising the process of identification and conveyance of critically-ill patients, the department said it has been discussing the issue with the Hospital Authority and both agree that taking critical patients in cardiac or respiratory arrest to the nearest accident and emergency department is the most feasible proposal.
Although the authority’s classification of patients in critical condition is not limited to the above two situations, the department agrees that the said arrangement is a pragmatic and practicable proposal.
The department will study the issue and make procedural amendments, so it can finalise the proposal as soon as possible.
The department welcomed the Ombudsman's recognition of its adaptation of the "total patient care" approach in conveying patients to hospitals.
The approach refers to the conveyance of patients by ambulance to appropriate hospitals for treatment within the shortest possible time in accordance with the hosptials' scale, equipment and intake capacity. Taking patients to the nearest accident and emergency department solely based on the distance and travel time cannot fully achieve the "total patient care" approach benefit.