The National Ambulance Service
Pre-Hospital Emergency Care in Ireland
The National Ambulance Service is the statutory pre-hospital emergency and intermediate care provider for the state. In the Dublin area, ambulance services are provided by NAS and Dublin Fire Brigade (DFB). Aero Medical services are provided by the Irish Air Corps and the Irish Coast Guard by agreement with each organisation. At a local level, the NAS is also supported by over 140 Community First Responder schemes, responding to particular types of medical emergencies (i.e. cardiac arrest, respiratory arrest, chest pain, choking and stroke) where it is essential for the patient to receive immediate life-saving care whilst an emergency response vehicle is en route to the patient.
Private and not-for-profit providers also play an important role in transporting patients requiring access to health care services and in supporting a variety of public and sporting events. We also work closely with the Northern Ireland Ambulance Service (NIAS) in the border areas for the benefit of the population on both sides of the border.
Our Regulatory Environment
The Pre-Hospital Emergency Care Council (PHECC) is an independent statutory agency with responsibility for standards, education and training in the field of pre-hospital emergency care in Ireland. The council publish clinical practice guidelines (CPGs) and recognise institutions to provide pre-hospital emergency care training and education. In addition, PHECC maintain a statutory register of practitioners and approve pre-hospital emergency care service providers to implement CPGs.
The Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) is an independent authority established to drive high quality and safe care for people using our health and social care services in Ireland. HIQA’s role is to develop standards, inspect and review health and social care services and support informed decisions on how services are delivered.
The service has changed significantly since 2006. The current service operates from over 100 locations throughout Ireland. In 2018 we:
- Responded to over 340,000 emergency 112/999 and urgent calls
- Transported approximately 40,000 intermediate care patients
- Co-ordinated and dispatched more than 800 Aero Medical/Air Ambulance calls
- Completed 600 paediatric and neonatal retrievals
- Continued to support and develop Community First Responder schemes