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Author(s): Marco Amorim
Sara Ferreira
António Couto
Title: Emergency Medical Service Response: Analyzing Vehicle Dispatching Rules
Issue Date: 2018-06-21
Abstract: In an era of information and advanced computing power, emergency medical services (EMS) still rely on rudimentary vehicle dispatching and reallocation rules. In many countries, road conditions such as traffic or road blocks, exact vehicle positions, and demand prediction are valuable information that is not considered when locating and dispatching emergency vehicles. Within this context, this paper presents an investigation of different EMS vehicle dispatching rules by comparing them using various metrics and frameworks. An intelligent dispatching algorithm is proposed, and survival metrics are introduced to compare the new concepts with the classic ones. This work shows that the closest idle vehicle rule (classic dispatching rule) is far from optimal and even a random dispatching of vehicles can outperform it. The proposed intelligent algorithm has the best performance in all the tested situations where resources are adequate. If resources are scarce, especially during peaks in demand, dispatching delays will occur, degrading the system's performance. In this case, no conclusion could be drawn as to which rule might be the best option. Nevertheless, it draws attention to the need for research focused on managing dispatch delays by prioritizing the waiting calls that inflict the higher penalty on the system performance. Finally, the authors conclude that the use of real traffic information introduces a considerable gain to the EMS response performance.
Document Type: Artigo em Revista Científica Internacional
Rights: restrictedAccess
Appears in Collections:FEUP - Artigo em Revista Científica Internacional

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