Papers And Originals

Can I Have an Ambulance, Doctor?

Br Med J 1974; 1 doi: (Published 09 February 1974) Cite this as: Br Med J 1974;1:226
  1. T. C. Beer,
  2. E. Goldenberg,
  3. D. S. Smith,
  4. A. Stuart Mason


    In a study of the ambulance service to an outpatient physiotherapy centre in an urban area over half of the palients were aged over 65, a quarter made at least three visits to the centre weekly, and the average travel and waiting times for all patients was about two-and-a-half hours. There was a direct relation between distance from home to the centre and travelling time for morning but not afternoon attenders. A second survey after some changes in the transport arrangements showed some relatively small reductions in overall travelling and waiting time. It is concluded that even under favourable conditions an important side effect of outpatient physiotherapy is the probable fatigue and anxiety generated by ambulance travel.