• Airway management in UK Ambulance Services

      Gregory, Pete; Kilner, T.; Woollard, Malcolm; Arnold-Jones, S. (2014-06)
    • Ambulance attendance at diabetes or diabetes-related emergencies in care homes – cross sectional database study

      Siriwardena, Aloysius Niroshan; Law, Graham; Smith, Murray D.; Iqbal, Mohammad; Phung, Viet-Hai; Spaight, Anne; Brewster, Amanda; Mountain, Pauline; Spurr, Keith; Ray, Mo; et al. (2019-09-24)
      Background Diabetes, which affects over 1 in 5 nursing or care home residents, may lead to diabetes-related emergencies with ambulance call-outs and hospitalisation. Our aim was to investigate the epidemiology of diabetes-related emergencies in care home residents which involved an ambulance attendance. Methods We used a cross-sectional design to investigate emergency ambulance attendances to people in nursing and residential care homes presenting with diabetes-related emergencies across the East Midlands between January 2012 and December 2017. We used clinical and dispatch data from East Midlands Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EMAS) and care home data from the Care Quality Commission, including call category, timing, location, place of residence, clinical or physiological status, treatments, outcome (conveyance) and costs in the analysis. Results Overall 219722 (6.7% of 3.3 million) attendances were to care home residents of which 12080 were for diabetes-related emergencies. Of 3152 care home patients categorised as having a ‘diabetic problem’ 1,957 (62.1%) were conveyed to hospital. This was not significantly different to the rate for other patients, taking into account other factors, despite access to trained staff in care homes. Statistically significant factors associated with conveyance included reduced consciousness level (OR 0.91, 95% CI 0.87–0.95), elevated heart (1.01, 1.01–1.02) or respiratory rate (1.08, 1.06–1.10), no treatment for hypoglycaemia (0.54, 0.34–0.86) or additional co-morbid medical (but not psychiatric) problems. Cost to EMAS was significantly lower when a patient was conveyed, by some £18 (95% CI £11.94–£24.12), but this would not outweigh downstream NHS costs arising from hospital care. For the simulation in which all trusts mean NHS Reference Costs were used, conveyance was no longer significant in the cost model. Conclusion Conveyance to hospital was common for care home patients with diabetes-related emergencies and more likely when conscious level was impaired, certain physiological measures abnormal or treatment for hypoglycaemia was not given. https://emj.bmj.com/content/36/10/e8.3 This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/emermed-2019-999abs.18
    • Ambulance CPAP saves lives: why don't we use it?

      Mullen, Robert (2013-12)
      Abstract published with permission. Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) is an established in-hospital therapy for the treatment of multiple aetiologies of breathlessness, primarily for acute cardiogenic pulmonary oedema (ACPE) due to acute exacerbations of congestive heart failure (CHF), but also (amongst others): exacerbations of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), asthma and pneumonia (Gray et al, 2009; Wesley et al, 2011). The use of CPAP as an adjunctive treatment for ACPE patients in front-line ambulances has been proven to improve patient outcome, preventing them from reaching the ‘point of no return’ and a downward spiral into total respiratory failure. This article will discuss current UK ambulance practice and examine the issues surrounding the introduction and use of CPAP as an adjunctive therapy in the treatment of ACPE, secondary to acutely exacerbated CHF, whilst also briefly discussing its use in other aetiologies of breathlessness.
    • Ambulances attending diabetes-related emergencies in care homes – cross sectional database study

      Siriwardena, Aloysius; Law, Graham; Smith, M.D.; Iqbal, Mohammad; Phung, Viet-Hai; Spaight, Anne; Brewster, A.; Mountain, P.; Spurr, K.; Ray, M.; et al. (2019-04-26)
      Background Diabetes, affecting 1 in 5 care home residents, may lead to ambulance call-outs and hospitalisation. We aimed to investigate the epidemiology of diabetes-related emergencies involving ambulance attendances to care home residents. Method Cross-sectional design investigating ambulance attendance to people presenting with diabetes-related emergencies in the East Midlands, UK, between 2012 and 2017. We analysed dispatch and ambulance clinical data with care home data, including call category, timing, location, care home type, clinical or physiological measures, treatments, conveyance (transport to hospital) and costs. Results Overall 2 19 722 (6.7% of 3.3 million) ambulances attended care homes over 6 years, with 12 080 (5.5%) to diabetes-related emergencies. Of 3152 care home patients categorised as having a ‘diabetic problem’, 1957 (62.1%) were conveyed to hospital, similar to that for community residents taking into account other factors. Factors associated with conveyance included reduced consciousness (OR 0.91, 95% CI 0.87–0.95), elevated heart (1.01, 1.01–1.02) or respiratory rate (1.08, 1.06–1.10), no treatment for hypoglycaemia (0.54, 0.34–0.86) or additional medical (but not psychiatric) problems. Ambulance costs were significantly lower when a patient was conveyed, by some £18 (95% CI £11.94–£24.12), but this would be outweighed by downstream hospital care costs. For a simulation in which all trusts’ mean NHS Reference Costs were used, conveyance was no longer significant in the cost model. Conclusion Conveyance following diabetes-related emergencies was as common for care home as for other community residents despite access to trained staff, and more likely with impaired consciousness, abnormal physiological measures or lack of treatment for hypoglycaemia. Conflict of interest None. Funding National institute for Health Research Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care East Midlands, UK., https://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/9/Suppl_2/A11.2. This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2019-EMS.30
    • Are they really refusing to travel? A qualitative study of prehospital records

      Shaw, Deborah; Dyas, Jane; Middlemass, Jo; Spaight, Anne; Briggs, Maureen; Christopher, Sarah; Siriwardena, Niroshan, A. (2006-09-19)
    • Audit of morphine administration by East Midlands Ambulance Service (EMAS)

      Winter, S.; Jootun, R. (2017-05)
      Aim For pre-hospital administration of morphine, JRCALC guidelines recommend recorded pain scores (PS) out of ten before and after use, an anti-emetic adjunct and ENTONOX provision prior to analgesic effect. This audit aimed to gain insight into how rigorously these guidelines were being adhered to in practice Methods This clinical audit examined patients who had been administered morphine by EMAS staff. Inclusion criteria were patients who had received documented oral, intravenous or intramuscular morphine within a three-month period. Those who declined morphine were excluded. Data extracted from the patient report forms included: patient demographics; documented PSs; morphine doses and routes; adjunct analgesics and use of anti-emetics. This information was used to determine how appropriately PSs, analgesic adjuncts and antiemetics were being used alongside morphine. Results There were 293 patients included in the audit. 205 (70.0%) had a PS documented before and after morphine administration; 50 (17.1%) had one documented PS and 38 (13.0%) had none. 58 (19.8%) patients received ENTONOX before the administration of morphine and 17 (5.8%) received it after morphine. 218 (74.4%) had no record of ENTONOX administration and only 100 (34.1%) patients were prescribed an anti-emetic with morphine. Conclusion There is potential for improved adherence to JRCALC guidelines through increased awareness and education. We will trial this at EMAS through staff notices followed by a re-audit in 4–6 months. Ideally, audits within other ambulance services with more patients would be undertaken for widespread quality improvement. https://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/bmjopen/7/Suppl_3/A3.3.full.pdf This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2017-EMSabstracts.9
    • Barriers and facilitators for people in BME groups accessing pre-hospital care and causes and consequences of any differences in delivery: systematic review and narrative synthesis

      Windle, Karen; Siriwardena, Aloysius Niroshan; Barot, Mukesh; Essam, Nadya; Johnson, Mark; Kai, Joe; Ortega, Marishona (2015-05)
      Introduction Research addressing inequalities has focused predominantly on primary and community care; few initiatives relate to the pre-hospital environment. We aimed to identify in the literature barriers or facilitators experienced by patients from BME communities in accessing pre-hospital care and to explore the causes and consequences of any differences in delivery. Methods We conducted a systematic literature review and narrative synthesis. Electronic and journal hand searches from 2003 through 2013 identi fied relevant evaluative studies (systematic reviews, randomised controlled trials, quasi-experimental, case and observational studies). A researcher extracted data to determine characteristics, results and quality, each checked by a second reviewer. The main outcome measures were delays in patient calls, mortality rates and 30-days survival post discharge. Results Eighteen studies met criteria for the review: two concerned services in England and Wales and 15 were United States based. Reported barriers to accessing care were generic (and wellknown) given the heterogeneity of BME groups: difficulties in communication where English was the patient ’s second language; new migrants ’ lack of knowledge of the health care system leading to inappropriate emergency calls; and cultural assumptions among clinical staff resulting in inappropriate diagnoses and treatment. There were limited reported facilitators to improvement, such as the need for translation services and staff education, but the latter were poorly described or developed. Where outcomes were discussed, there was evidence for race-related disparity in mortality and survival rates. This could re flect differences in condition severity, delays between onset and initiation of calls, or the scope of response and assistance. Conclusion The paucity of literature and difficulties of transferring findings from US to UK context identified an important research gap. Further studies should be undertaken to investigate UK differences in prehospital care and outcomes for BME groups, followed by qualitative approaches to understand barriers and enablers to equitable access. https://emj.bmj.com/content/emermed/32/5/e1.3.full.pdf This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/emermed-2015-204880.3
    • Baseline characteristics of the 1149 patients recruited into the Rapid Intervention with Glyceryl trinitrate in Hypertensive stroke Trial-2 (RIGHT-2) randomized controlled trial

      Bath, Philip M.; Scutt, Polly; Appleton, Jason P.; Dixon, Mark; Woodhouse, Lisa J.; Wardlaw, Joanna M.; Sprigg, Nikola (2019-04)
    • Cardiac arrest in the young: rare but possible

      Mallon, Gareth (2011-04)
      Abstract published with permission. It can be hard to believe that someone young and active may be at risk from heart problems, but each week in the UK at least 12 apparently fit and healthy young people die from undiagnosed heart conditions. Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) is a charity that works to support families affected by the sudden cardiac death of a young person, to help young people who have been diagnosed with life threatening heart conditions and to reduce the number of tragedies that occur. 2010 marked the 15th anniversary year of CRY. Here, Gareth Mallon, a community paramedic and developing tutor for the East Midlands Ambulance Service (EMAS), discusses his personal involvement with the charity in more detail.
    • A case study framework for design and evaluation of a national project to improve prehospital care of myocardial infarction and stroke

      Essam, Nadya; Davy, Zowie; Shaw, Deborah; Spaight, Anne; Siriwardena, Aloysius (2011-11)
      Background Cardiovascular disease (CVD) affects 1.8% of the population annually, 0.9% with stroke and 0.8% with coronary heart disease. People suffering from CVD often present acutely to ambulance services with symptoms of acute myocardial infarction or stroke. Early and effective treatment prevents death, improves long term health and reduces future disability. Objective Our aim is to develop a rational approach for informing the design and evaluation of a national project for improving prehospital care of myocardial infarction and stroke: the Ambulance Services Cardiovascular Quality Initiative (ASCQI), the first national improvement project for prehospital care. Methods We will use a case study methodology initially utilising an evaluation logic model to define inputs (in terms of resources for planning, implementation and evaluation), outputs (in terms of intended changes in healthcare processes) and longer-term outcomes (in terms of health and wider benefits or harms), whether intended or incidental and in the short, medium or long term. Results We will present an evaluation logic model for the project. This will be expanded to show the analytical techniques which we will use to explain how and why the project achieves its outcomes. This includes times series analyses, pattern matching, cross case syntheses and explanation building to inform an explanatory logic model. We will discuss how this model will be useful in determining the data that will need to be collected during the course of the project to inform the detailed explanation of how and why the project delivered its outcomes. Conclusion The case study approach will enable us to evaluate the impact of this collaborative project in constituent ambulance services as well as the initiative as a whole. It will enable us to show whether and to what extent the project has had an impact, but also how and why this has happened. https://emj.bmj.com/content/emermed/28/11/e2.7.full.pdf This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/emermed-2011-200645.15
    • Characteristics of neighbourhoods with high incidence of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest and low bystander cardiopulmonary resuscitation rates in England

      Brown, Terry P.; Booth, Scott; Hawkes, Claire A.; Soar, Jasmeet; Mark, Julian; Mapstone, James; Fothergill, Rachael; Black, Sarah; Pocock, Helen; Bichmann, Anna; et al. (2019-01-01)
    • Community falls prevention for people who call an emergency ambulance after a fall: an economic evaluation alongside a randomised controlled trial

      Sach, Tracey H.; Logan, Philippa A.; Coupland, Carol A.C.; Gladman, John R.F.; Sahota, Opinder; Stoner-Hobbs, Valarie; Robertson, Kate; Tomlinson, Vicki; Ward, Marie; Avery, Anthony J. (2012-09)
    • A comparative evaluation of 999 call-to-needle time of patients presenting with red flag sepsis treated with antibiotics by paramedics and emergency department staff

      Payne, Tanya; Chippendale, Jonathon; Lloyd, Adele (2017-10)
      Background National Institute for Health and Care Excellence guidelines on the recognition, diagnosis and early management of sepsis suggest that in all cases of high risk (or ‘red flag’) sepsis a broad spectrum antibiotic is given without delay and within one hour. For patients identified pre-hospital, GP’s and ambulance services are advised to have mechanisms in place that will allow them to give antibiotics but only where the transfer time is greater than one hour. Whilst one hour is considered the gold standard timeframe in which to receive antibiotics, the 999 call dispatch process is often overlooked and there are no studies to date that examine the 999 call-to-needle time for sepsis patients. The aim of this evaluation was to explore the difference between call-to-needle times of patients who present with ‘red flag’ sepsis receiving antibiotic therapy by a paramedic pre hospital versus Emergency Department (ED) staff. Method Data collected from a feasibility evaluation was used to determine the call-to-needle time of a broad spectrum antibiotic given by a trained paramedic prior to arrival at ED. A random sample of patients arriving in ED by ambulance with high risk (or ‘red flag’) sepsis during the same 6 month period was identified with the call-to-needle time collected retrospectively. A Mann-Whitney U test was performed using SPSS version 22 to determine if there was any significant difference. Results Of the patients that were treated (n=140) the median call-to-needle time of patients treated by paramedics was 45:30 min (n=60), compared to a median call-to-needle time by ED staff of 113:30 min (n=80) (p<0.001). Conclusion Considering the call dispatch challenges that all ambulance services experience, patients with ‘red flag’ sepsis can be treated with an antibiotic within an hour of the 999 call and on average one hour earlier than patients who are treated by ED staff. https://emj.bmj.com/content/34/10/e8.2 This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/emermed-2017-207114.23
    • A critical reassessment of ambulance service airway management in prehospital care: Joint Royal Colleges Ambulance Liaison Committee Airway Working Group, June 2008

      Deakin, Charles D.; Clarke, Tom; Nolan, Jerry P.; Zideman, David; Gwinnutt, Carl; Moore, Fionna; Keeble, Carl; Blancke, Wim (2010-03)
      Paramedic tracheal intubation has been practised in the UK for more than 20 years and is currently a core skill for paramedics. Growing evidence suggests that tracheal intubation is not the optimal method of airway management by paramedics and may be detrimental to patient outcomes. There is also evidence that the current initial training of 25 intubations performed in-hospital is inadequate, and that the lack of ongoing intubation practice may compound this further. Supraglottic airway devices (eg, laryngeal mask airway), which were not available when extended training and paramedic intubation was first introduced, are now in use in many ambulance services and are a suitable alternative prehospital airway device for paramedics. https://emj.bmj.com/content/27/3/226.long. This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/emj.2009.082115
    • Data quality and 30-day survival for out-of-hospital cardiac arrest in the UK out-of-hospital cardiac arrest registry: a data linkage study

      Rajagopal, Sangeerthana; Booth, Scott J.; Brown, Terry P.; Ji, Chen; Hawkes, Claire A.; Siriwardena, Aloysius Niroshan; Kirby, Kim; Black, Sarah; Spaight, Robert; Gunson, Imogen; et al. (2017-11)
      Objectives The Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest Outcomes (OHCAO) project aims to understand the epidemiology and outcomes of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) across the UK. This data linkage study is a subproject of OHCAO. The aim was to establish the feasibility of linking OHCAO data to National Health Service (NHS) patient demographic data and Office for National Statistics (ONS) date of death data held on the NHS Personal Demographics Service (PDS) database to improve OHCAO demographic data quality and enable analysis of 30-day survival from OHCA. Design and setting Data were collected from 1 January 2014 to 31 December 2014 as part of a prospective, observational study of OHCA attended by 10 English NHS Ambulance Services. 28 729 OHCA cases had resuscitation attempted by Emergency Medical Services and were included in the study. Data linkage was carried out using a data linkage service provided by NHS Digital, a national provider of health-related data. To assess data linkage feasibility a random sample of 3120 cases was selected. The sample was securely transferred to NHS Digital to be matched using OHCAO patient demographic data to return previously missing demographic data and provide ONS date of death data. Results A total of 2513 (80.5%) OHCAO cases were matched to patients in the NHS PDS database. Using the linkage process, missing demographic data were retrieved for 1636 (72.7%) out of 2249 OHCAO cases that had previously incomplete demographic data. Returned ONS date of death data allowed analysis of 30-day survival status. The results showed a 30-day survival rate of 9.3%, reducing unknown survival status from 46.1% to 8.5%. Conclusions In this sample, data linkage between the OHCAO registry and NHS PDS database was shown to be feasible, improving demographic data quality and allowing analysis of 30-day survival status. https://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/bmjopen/7/11/e017784.full.pdf This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2017-017784
    • Decision making and safety in ambulance service transitions

      O'Hara, Rachel; Johnson, Maxine; Hirst, Enid; Weyman, Andrew; Shaw, Deborah; Mortimer, Peter; Newman, Chris; Storey, Matthew; Turner, Janette; Mason, Suzanne; et al. (2015-05)
      Introduction Decisions made by ambulance staff are often timecritical and based on limited information. Wrong decisions could have serious consequences for patients but little is known about areas of risk associated with decisions about patient care. We aimed to examine system in fluences on decision making in the ambulance service setting focusing on paramedic roles. Method An exploratory mixed methods qualitative study was conducted in three Ambulance Service Trusts. A document search and 16 interviews were conducted to understand service delivery in each Trust, how they link with other services and potential influences on decisions about patient care. Researchers observed ambulance crews on 34 shifts and 10 paramedics completed ‘digital diaries’ to report challenges for decision making or patient safety. Three focus groups with staff (N=21) and three with service users (N=23) were held to explore their views on decision making and patient safety. Data were charted to produce a typology of decisions then coded and thematically analysed to identify in fluences on those decisions. Findings Nine types of decision were identi fied, ranging from specialist emergency pathways to non-conveyance. In fluences on these decisions included communication with Control Room staff; patient assessment, decision support and alternative options to ED conveyance. Seven main issues in fluencing patient safety in decision making were identi fied: meeting demand; performance and priorities; access to care options; risk aversion; education, training and professional development for crews; communication and feedback to crews; resources and safety culture. Conclusions A range of decisions are made by ambulance staff in complex, time bound changing conditions. Training and development and access to alternative options to ED conveyance were identi fied as particularly important issues. https://emj.bmj.com/content/emermed/32/5/e2.1.full.pdf This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/emermed-2015-204880.4
    • Determining the Feasibility of Ambulance-Based Randomised Controlled Trials in Patients with Ultra-Acute Stroke: Study Protocol for the "Rapid Intervention with GTN in Hypertensive Stroke Trial"

      Ankolekar, Sandeep; Sare, Gillian; Geeganage, Chamila; Fuller, Michael; Stokes, Lynn; Sprigg, Nicola; Parry, Ruth; Siriwardena, Aloysius; Bath, Phillip, M.W. (2012-09)
    • Developing new ways of measuring the quality and impact of ambulance service care: the PhOEBE mixed-methods research programme

      Turner, Janette; Siriwardena, Aloysius Niroshan; Coster, Joanne; Jacques, Richard; Irving, Andy; Crum, Annabel; Gorrod, Helen B.; Nicholl, Jon; Phung, Viet-Hai; Togher, Fiona J.; et al. (2019-04)
    • Development and pilot of clinical performance indicators for English ambulance services

      Siriwardena, Aloysius; Shaw, Deborah; Donohoe, Rachel; Black, Sarah; Stephenson, John; National Ambulance Clinical Audit Steering Group (2010-04-12)
      Introduction There is a compelling need to develop clinical performance indicators for ambulance services in order to move from indicators based primarily on response times and in light of the changing clinical demands on services. We report on progress on the national pilot of clinical performance indicators for English ambulance services. Method Clinical performance indicators were developed in five clinical areas: acute myocardial infarction, cardiac arrest, stroke (including transient ischaemic attack), asthma and hypoglycaemia. These were determined on the basis of common acute conditions presenting to ambulance services and in line with a previously published framework. Indicators were piloted by ambulance services in England and results were presented in tables and graphically using funnel (statistical process control) plots. Results Progress for developing, agreeing and piloting of indicators has been rapid, from initial agreement in May 2007 to completion of the pilot phase by the end of March 2008. The results of benchmarking of indicators are shown. The pilot has informed services in deciding the focus of their improvement programme in 2008–2009 and indicators have been adopted for national performance assessment of standards of prehospital care. Conclusion The pilot will provide the basis for further development of clinical indicators, benchmarking of performance and implementation of specific evidence-based interventions to improve care in areas identified for improvement. A national performance improvement registry will enable evaluation and sharing of effective improvement methods as well as increasing stakeholder and public access to information on the quality of care provided by ambulance services. https://emj.bmj.com/content/27/4/327. This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/emj.2009.072397