Ambulances in Coimbatore hospitals are becoming more high-tech. A city hospital has acquired an ambulance which can relay real time data on the patient’s condition to the base ICU from the moment the patient enters the ambulance till he reaches the emergency unit in the hospital. The ambulance, which has equipment to record echocardiogram, blood pressure, saturation temperature among others, will be able to relay all the vital parameters to the base intensive care unit in the hospital. “In the base ICU, an intensivist will be present constantly watching the monitor readings and instructing the staff in the ambulance on how to handle the patient,” said a spokesperson of Royal Care Hospital.
Though an ambulance always has a driver, nursing staff trained in basic life support along with a doctor, often they have difficulty identifying and managing life threatening events. “Earlier they had to keep calling up the hospital ICU and asking for advice. Here with the intensivist being able to monitor the patient’s vitals from his desk, he or she can call and advice the ambulance staff on what they could do to maintain the patient’s condition till they reach the hospital” said the spokesperson. The hospital expects the ambulance to help save all critically ill patients. “For example, when a patient is suffering from acute myocardial ischemia or life-threatening arrhythmias, the intensivist who can directly visualize the changes in ECG, or disturbance in heart rate, can immediately instruct the staff on what they could do to save the patient including all life saving interventions,” said chief operating officer of the hospital Dr Krishnananda. The ambulance will be launched on March 16. – TOI