Aim Dual dispatch of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) -trained fire-fighters or police officers equipped with automated external defibrillators (AEDs) in addition to emergency medical services (EMS) in out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) has in some minor cohort studies been associated with improved survival. The aim of this study was to evaluate the association between dual dispatch and survival in OHCA at a national level.
Methods This prospective, cohort study was conducted January 1st, 2012, to December 31st, 2014. OHCA victims in nine Swedish counties covered by dual dispatch and resuscitation by first responders and EMSs were compared with a propensity-matched contemporary control group of OHCA victims in 12 counties where only EMS were dispatched. The primary outcome was survival to 30 days.
Results 8698 OHCA were included of which 2786 in each group (intervention and control) were matched. The median time from emergency call to arrival of EMSs or first responder was nine minutes in the intervention group vs. ten minutes in the controls (p<0.001). The proportion of patients admitted alive to hospital was 31.4% in the intervention group versus 24.9% in the controls (adjusted OR 1.40, 95% CI 1.24–1.57). Thirty-day survival was 9.5% in the intervention group versus 7.7% in the controls (adjusted OR 1.27, 95% CI 1.05–1.54).
Conclusion Dual dispatch of first responders in addition to EMSs in OHCA was associated with a moderate but significant increase in 30 day survival.
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Conflict of interest None declared.
Funding The Swedish Heart–Lung Foundation, the National Board of Health and Welfare, and the Laerdal Foundation for Acute Medicine in Norway.
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