Ambulance Service gets Tough

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Ambulance Service gets Tough

Panasonic won a contract to supply the entire fleet of Victoria’s Metropolitan Ambulance Service (MAS) with its CF-18 Toughbook laptops.

Panasonic won a contract to supply the entire fleet of Victoria’s Metropolitan Ambulance Service (MAS) with its CF-18 Toughbook laptops.

Paramedics will use the tablet PCs to run a software program called Victorian Ambulance Clinical Information System (VACIS), developed by MAS to assist in capturing patient data for analysis and reporting.

The Toughbooks would also hold information to assist paramedics while they work on a number projects including; clinical practice guidelines, animated work instructions, training materials and an electronic drug database.

MAS paramedics deals with around a quarter of a million emergency cases a year [and] the equipment it uses needs to be reliable and able to resist a harsh working environment, said Cameron Crampton, general manager information management services, MAS.

Prior to the use of mobile PCs, paramedics had to fill out a paper-based patient care record in freehand. It would have teams of people going through each record pulling out information such as cardiac, trauma and drug information.

Camren said it was very labour intensive and the service could only get a very limited range of information.

"By producing detailed reports for trauma and clinical intervention, we can determine how, we should target future Paramedic training."

Panasonic has already rolled out Tablet PCs to 300 paramedics. Another 200 Toughbooks would be rolled out to 1000 paramedics by the end of 2006.

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