Emergency Medical Services

Emergency Medical Services play an important role in the Danish Healthcare System. Emergencies require fast and resolute action from both citizens and healthcare professionals. But the success of these efforts ultimately depends on an effective emergency management system.

Danish healthcare transformation prioritizes early diagnostics and treatment. The focus on cancer and chronic diseases are further initiatives, which change the role of acute care in the future. These are the reasons why Denmark has both introduced the future Emergency Medical Services and at the same time has given pre-hospital assistance and the ambulance a new role.

The Emergency Medical Dispatch Center is the "gatekeeper" to emergency care, providing citizens with instructions to begin care, such as telephone-assisted CPR, until healthcare professionals arrive. The staff at the Emergency Medical Dispatch Center are trained to assess emergency calls to ensure that citizens receive the most effective help. The right qualifications ensure that the staff can identify, prioritize and dispatch the right resources.

In many emergency situations, time is of critical importance. This fact has triggered a nationwide effort to encourage and educate citizens to handle emergencies. For a citizen suffering from cardiac arrest, for instance, survival chances will often depend on the actions of bystanders – for example so-called heart runners - before medical staff arrives. A bystander will be alerted through a smartphone application and can rush to the scene of emergency to begin CPR as quickly as possible. The Emergency Medical Dispatch Center dispatches an emergency physician and a paramedic while guiding the bystander until the emergency team arrives.

Watch video about the heart runners.

Technological advances and enhanced skill levels of emergency staff allow for highly specialized treatment to begin at the scene of an emergency and continue during transport. All ambulances in Denmark, including Falck ambulances, use prehospital records, collecting and storing data in one central database, which ensures seamless communication and real-time transmission of data between ambulances and hospital departments. This enables emergency medical staff, both in the ambulance and at the receiving hospital, to make the best possible use of data from hospital and prehospital patient records and from tests performed during transport. It ensures optimal patient treatment, both during transport and upon arrival at the hospital.

Watch video about the Danish approach to prehospital treatment.