There is a massive shortage of ambulance personnel in the Eindhoven region. That is why the GGD ( Municipal health service) is sounding the alarm.
According to the institution, there is no more leeway. This shortage can lead to undesirable situations. Because if too few medical personnel can respond in case of emergency, ambulances might arrive too late where they are needed.
“Sometimes there can be 20 calls in ten minutes. If we do not have the ambulances and personnel to respond to all these calls, people will have to wait for up to 20 minutes. Sometimes that is too long”, according to paramedic, Moniek van Lint.
The GGd is, therefore, looking for specially qualified medics, who are hard to find. “You need a great level of experience and training. Normal training as a nurse is not enough. You need extra training at the hospital, in emergency care or intensive care. The hospital needs these people too. In the end, you want the same few people”, says Aysegül Bilici-Ozdemir of the GGD Human Resources department.
Besides the shortage of medical staff, there is also an increase in the number of trips the ambulance service needs to take. There is also more and more demand for the ambulance service. The population is ageing, and people live longer in their own homes, which increases the pressure. De Lint: “People are doing extra shifts. Also 12-hour shifts. But that just is not enough”. Bilici-Ozedemir says, “The nurses have a passion for their vocation. Currently, we are asking for extra flexibility from them”.
According to national standards, the response time for all emergency services has to be under 15 minutes. In the Eindhoven region, the ambulance service does not meet this standard.