The patient transfer services Ontario is famous for are gradually becoming an important component of local health-care delivery. However, do we ever discuss the quality and safety issues related to non-emergency cases? We always focus on quick ambulance services Ontario patients need but never the systematic commuting of non-emergency patients in general. We often see and talk about how numerous emergency cases are being helped with Toronto ambulance service or a great patient transfer service Ontario can offer. What we forget are the generic issues that we face whether it is a critical case or a normal one.
While you may say that our success in non-emergency patient transports is not the ultimate criterion to measure the soundness of our healthcare system, it is still every bit important for the common man. This is because it will also impact the degree of efficiency required to complete the transfer process on time and without putting the life of the patient at risk be it in emergency or not.
Non emergency patient transport services include:
• Inter-hospital transfers due to unavailability of resources
• Inter clinic transfers due to lack of specialty equipment
• Better healthcare options available at other hospitals
• Transfers between homes and hospitals
• Cross city transfers
• Cross country transfers
A primary factor that determines the quality of patient transfers within cities like Ontario and Toronto is communication. Yes, communication is an essential ingredient of health-care processes. According to studies close to 11% of preventable adverse results is an outcome of lack of proper communication. Communication-related shortcomings when organizing for patients to be flown or driven between medical facilities also affect the time taken to treat patients with critical conditions. Just because of poor communication in relation to patient transfer or handover, we are seeing many errors in care which are more than the acceptable level. Apart from this, we need complete standardization of both emergency and non-emergency ground ambulance services Ontario has to offer. We can improve the quality of patient transport services further by applying information technology to it. This is a way we can effectively reduce risk and increase efficiency.