Knowing when to call an ambulance to take a patient to his/her GP or to A&E is critical when it comes to saving the life of the patient. It’s even more important when the NHS is overwhelmed. An ambulance may delay getting to you due to A&E departments being gridlocked and ambulances queueing for hours to deliver critical patients to A&E. In fact, there are more and more patients spending hours in the back of an ambulance or on trolleys – waiting to be seen by healthcare providers. This article provides information on what you need to know when deciding to call an ambulance, go to your GP, or to A&E.
The information in this article will address this extremely difficult and critical question. You should remember to always call an ambulance if the patient is an elderly person, an infant, or a young kid. If you are needing a private ambulance service or medical service, I recommend investing with Medic Team.
Note that children can more often than not mask some of the serious symptoms of their condition and their condition can quickly deteriorate. Even though the decision you make may vary from patient to patient, you should immediately administer First Aid and call an ambulance if the patient:
- Is not breathing or struggling to breathe, having chest pain, or breathing in a strange way (sucking the breath in below the rib cage and using other muscles to help them breathe).
- Has a severe injury and is bleeding profusely which you are unable to stop even with direct pressure on the wound.
- Is unconscious of what is going on around him/her or experiencing weakness, difficulty speaking, or numbness.
- Has a seizure for the first time. Even if the patient recovers from the seizure later, you should immediately take him/her to a healthcare provider. Make sure to call an ambulance if the seizure lasts for more than three minutes.
- Has a severe allergic reaction. In this case, you should first administer the patient’s adrenaline auto-injector if he or she has one and call an ambulance immediately.
- If a child or an elderly person is burned severely and requires dressing, treat the burn under cool running water for at least 20 minutes and call an ambulance. Make sure to keep cooling the wound until the paramedics arrive at the scene. Look out for signs of shock. If the adult is fit enough, cool the burn for 20 minutes and apply burns dressing or loosely cover the wound with cling film and take him/her to A&E for medical attention.
What to do if someone falls?
Make sure to call an ambulance if someone has been hit by a car or fallen from a height. If the individual has been hit with force while performing combat or contact sport, there is a higher possibility of a spinal injury. Keep the person completely still and call an ambulance immediately.
If the individual is on his/her back, breathing and unconscious, and you are concerned about their airway, roll the person into a recovery position carefully and then call an ambulance. Make sure to carefully log roll them into the recovery position without twisting his/her spine. You should have robust contingency plans in place to get additional assistance to the treatment room in an emergency.
If the patient is not breathing and unconscious, start CPR. If the patient is a baby or child, perform one minute of CPR before you call an ambulance. For adults, call an ambulance immediately, and get an AED if there is one available.