When do you need an ambulance?

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Facing an emergency situation for the first time can be quite stressful, but if you know what to look for, you will be better prepared. Ambulances are used for these emergency situations. You should always call an ambulance in situations where someone is unconscious, not breathing, badly injured or has had a fit. Identifying an emergency situation and calling an ambulance in time could save someone’s life.

An ambulance provides transport to hospitals in emergencies, while allowing emergency medical technicians to begin treatment once they get to you. For someone in need of emergency services and medical attention, this could make all the difference.

However, if an ambulance is not needed, it should be noted that this can be a costly expense. Other than that, emergency services are thinly stretched and rather than calling upon their service when not needed, it is best to know in which situations to make the call. To avoid overloading the service, it is vital to be able to assess when someone is seriously ill or hurt, or whether the situation is a mild enough case to consult your GP instead.

According to OnlineFirstAid, if the injured/ ill person is an elderly, a baby or a very young child and you are seriously concerned – always call an ambulance!

Serious symptoms can often be disguised in children and their health can then quickly deteriorate.

If you are unsure of a person’s condition or how serious it is, call your local emergency service or as a member of Affinity Rescue you will be able to call us and a trusted agent will be able to assist you.

If a person appears to be in a critical condition owing to an injury, you should not move him/her and immediately call for medical assistance. If moving such person could pose a risk to his/her health, you should not move him/her either. EMS (Emergency services) agencies are trained on how to extract people safely from potentially dangerous situations. If you and another person are involved in an accident and injured, you should definitely call an ambulance, as getting behind the wheel while weak or lightheaded could be more dangerous.

In other instances, if a person is choking and needs abdominal thrusts or back blows, or his or her heart has stopped, call the ambulance and get such person on his/her way while you help the person or perform CPR.

According to Online First Aid, every situation is different, but we would strongly advise you to immediately administer First Aid, if you have first aid training and to call an ambulance if the patient:

  • Is not breathing.
  • Is having chest pain, difficulty in breathing or is feeling weak, numb or struggling to speak.
  • Is experiencing severe bleeding that you are unable to stop when applying direct pressure on the wound.
  • Is struggling for breath, possibly breathing in a strange way and appears to ‘suck in’ below the rib cage as he/she uses other muscles to help with his/her breathing.
  • Is unconscious or unaware of his/her surroundings.
  • Had a fit for the first time, even if he/she seems to recover.
  • Is having a severe allergic reaction accompanied by difficulty in breathing or collapses – always get an ambulance if this happens.
  • If a child is burnt and it is severe enough to need dressing. You should treat the burn under cool running water and call an ambulance. Keep cooling the burn until the paramedics arrive and look out for signs of shock.
  • If someone has fallen from a height or has been hit by a car.





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