This August, medics on bicycles have been starting a patrol in the centre of Tallinn (Estonia). It was an experiment with the results that showed that it was a success, and also next summer the medics on bikes are going to patrol again.
The medics on bicycles had been working for 100 hours on the street totally driving 400 kilometres. Overall, 27 calls were received. In 25 cases the velo-patrol arrived faster than ambulance. The youngest patient was 13-year old, but the oldest one – 78. The average response time of the patrol was three minutes. There were also a lot of calls made by tourists, who had complaints on unserious health problems – headache, sore feet or a request to measure blood pressure.
The Tallinn medics on bikes will be back in the summer of 2010, taking into account the positive results – the resuscitation in the case of clinical death, fast response, efficiency and low prime cost.
Next to the 46 thousand of Tallinn population, living in the city centre, also nearly one million tourists visit the city and various events and excursions are held each year. However, the ambulance station is situated outside the centre, so it has problems to get to patients driving along the narrow streets of the Old Town and has to spend considerable amount of time.