A study on emergency response times to vehicle accidents from University of Virginia researchers has been published in the November issue of the American Journal of Preventative Medicine. Here are the results:
"Urban sprawl is significantly associated with increased EMS response time and a higher probability of delayed ambulance arrival following motor-vehicle crashes in the U.S. The results of this study suggest that promoting of community design and development that follows smart-growth principles and regulates urban sprawl may improve EMS performance and reliability"Dr. Matthew Trowbridge, an author of the paper, discusses:
The medical profession has been paying close attention to the health implications of land use patterns and design in recent years, and this paper's finding adds to the growing body of literature with similar conclusions. Health Impact Assessments are being used by many communities to apply some of these results to specific places.
One of the benefits of the national conversation about health care we've been having for the last six months is that the public is becoming more aware of how comprehensive health care really is. We've come to understand that no strategy for reducing costs can be successful without paying attention to preventative care. Sadly, the most advanced treatments available may not be of any help if the ambulance is 5 minutes late.