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Additional measures for expedited transport of Covid emergency patients

  • Date : 2022-03-30
  • Hit : 811

Additional measures for expedited transport of Covid emergency patients
코로나 응급 환자 신속 이송을 위한 추가 조치

Mar 23, 2022


There is an increased demand for emergency transport due to a rise in the number of 119 ambulance calls for emergency for Covid patients at-home care. Number of emergency visits to local emergency medical centers by COVID-19 confirmed cases: 163 on February 8 → 1,796 on March 13

Difficulties on site have been observed in quick transport of emergency Covid patients due to: the limited number of isolation beds in the emergency rooms and the long stay time of Covid patients; the avoidance of treatment by some emergency medical institutions; the difficulty in communication between public health centers and 119 emergency centers. Average emergency room stay time of Covid-19 patients is 352 minutes, about 1.8 times that of 195 minutes for non-Covid patients.


To improve this situation, support was provided for installation of isolation beds in the emergency rooms and created the number of cohort isolation areas, a treatment area for suspected patients, to increase the capacity of the emergency room for Covid patients.

In order to increase the circulation of beds in the emergency rooms, Covid patients in emergency rooms can admitted at the same hospital, and if needed, the hospital may request the National Emergency Medical Center for support with patient transfer to another hospital.

Furthermore, if the city/province patient management team determines that a patient needs urgent transport (due to shortness of breath, loss of consciousness, etc.), the National Emergency Medical Center locates an emergency medical institution where the patient can be transferred.

In addition, the “Emergency Room Isolation Bed Real-Time Status System (‘Emergency Room in My Hands’)” was built on March 2022 so that it can be used by the 119 ambulance teams to help with the selection of hospitals to transfer emergency patients.


Measures to provide incentives to emergency medical institutions for treatment of Covid-19 patients.

Covid patient treatment will be factored into the 2022 evaluation of emergency medical institutions, conducted by the Naitonal Medical Emergency Center, to provide incentives to hospitals to accommodate Covid emergency patients more actively.

Details for the calculation criteria for the sharing of treatment for Covid patients and the evaluation indicators was decided after deliberation by the Emergency Medical Institution Evaluation Committee and notified to emergency medical institutions nationwide.

Meanwhile, the evaluation period for emergency medical institutions in 2022 is from July 1, 2021 to June 30, 2022, and the on-site evaluation is planned to be conducted from August to October of this year.

In addition, due to regional differences in coronavirus beds and emergency medical resources, there are practical difficulties in setting a national principle to be applied nationwide for transporting at-home care Covid patients.

The government formed an emergency consultative body including three main entities -- local governments, local firefighting headquarters, and emergency medical institutions -- to establish principles of emergency transport for Covid patients under home care and requested to share related information through a hotline.

// For inquiries, contact Media Relations, Ministry of Health and Welfare 044-202-2047 or fairytale@korea.kr

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