SHAH ALAM – The Health Ministry’s ambulances responded to 1,120 emergencies daily nationwide, says its Deputy Minister Datuk Seri Dr Hilmi Yahaya.
He said last year, 41 per cent or more than 600,000 emergency calls via 999 were actually calls seeking the ministry’s ambulance service.
“After a systematic screening process in the MERS999 system, almost 75 per cent (450,000) resulted in ambulance response and almost 90 per cent (408,000) of the responses were carried out by the ministry’s ambulance.
“This shows the ministry’s pre-hospital treatment and ambulance service is heavily demanded by the people,” he told a media conference at the Shah Alam Hospital here today.
Dr Hilmi said this after handing over 21 ambulances to the Selangor Health Department and Federal Territories Health Departments of Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya as well as Kuala Lumpur Hospital.
He said the ministry’s ambulance service also served to transfer patients from the ministry’s facilities to specialist hospitals such as cardiology, trauma and pediatric referral hospitals.
“In 2004 alone, there were more than 400,000 patients transported via such transfer service between facilities or almost 1,000 patients daily or 41 patients every hour,” he said.
In this regard, he said, the ministry had also taken various measures to continue strengthening its ambulance fleet with the purchase of about 200 new ambulances yearly since 2007 and the ministry currently has about 2,000 ambulances throughout the country.
Commenting on the response time of ambulance, Dr Hilmi said the ministry had succeeded in improving the response time to less than 15 minutes under an ambulance hotspot project with the cooperation of non-governmental organisations (NGO).
“Our strategy to provide ambulance at five sub-urban emergency focus locations around the Klang Valley, three in Selangor and two in Kuala Lumpur has succeeded in reducing reponse time from 15 minutes to 10 minutes.
“Almost 5,000 emergency patients have benefitted from this initiative since it was implemented on Nov 1, 2014,” he said, adding that the ministry was planning to expand the ambulance hotspot project to other states such as Penang. – BERNAMA