Speaker of the Sejm Elżbieta Witek announced that she wants the ambulance arrival time to not exceed 15 minutes. How much is it currently and what are the current regulations in this matter?
From the moment the dispatcher receives a report about an accident and the need for help from an emergency medical team, the ambulance should reach the injured person within a specified time. Elżbieta Witek recently announced the creation of a system that guarantees the arrival of an ambulance at the scene of an accident within 15 minutes. However, she made a promise that should, to a large extent, already be fulfilled.
The ambulance will arrive in 15 minutes – Marshal Witek promises
During the election meeting in Grodziec, Elżbieta Witek made a promise regarding the time of ambulance arrival at the scene of the accident (this promise will apply if the ruling party stays in power). “Our plan assumes that within a few years, 2,013 ambulances will be transferred to the brigade. We want there to be an ambulance in every commune, so that the journey to the person in need does not exceed 15 minutes. Ambulances will be stationed at the State Fire Service units, also at selected Volunteer Fire Departments – those that are in the National Rescue and Firefighting System,” she said.
She also added that currently, even in smaller villages, fire stations are being built or renovated, and Volunteer Fire Department firefighters are being trained as paramedics.
When should the ambulance arrive?
The State Emergency Medical Service is responsible for providing every person in a state of sudden threat to health or life with the necessary medical assistance. From the moment the medical dispatcher accepts the notification, the average waiting time should be:
no more than 8 minutes in cities with over 10,000 inhabitants,
no more than 15 minutes outside these cities,
The maximum arrival time cannot be longer than 15 minutes in a city with more than 10,000 inhabitants and 20 minutes outside a city with more than 10,000 inhabitants. This time applies in accordance with the PRM Act, Art. 24 section 1 point 1.
Actual time of arrival of the ambulance at the scene of the incident
How does the time allocated for the ambulance to arrive at the scene of the incident translate into reality? Central Statistical Office data for 2020 show that expectations are quite divergent from the prevailing realities. They indicate that the median of this time was exceeded in almost all voivodeships. The worst situation was in the following voivodeships: Lower Silesia, Pomerania, Łódź and Lubusz, where the median waiting time for an ambulance was 19-21 minutes.
How to prepare for the arrival of an ambulance?
While waiting for the ambulance to arrive, it is important to do a few things. First of all, you should make sure that the place of the incident is safe for the injured party and other people. If the report concerns a loved one, please prepare:
personal documents of the injured party,
list of medications taken,
possible discharge from hospital,
health booklet (in the case of a child).
If there are pets in the house, such as a dog or a cat, it is very important to lock them in a separate room. This way, you will ensure the safety and comfort of paramedics’ work. You should also check whether the ambulance will be able to get to your house (the apartment or house should be properly marked and lit). It is also worth asking someone from your household or neighbors to go outside the block or house and help the ambulance get to its destination by directing it appropriately.