Resuscitative efforts have been shown to be unsuccessful in most cases of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA), and survivors who do recover cardiac function often sustain severe hypoxic brain damage. Time to efficacious care is a primary determinant of disability-free survival. In the Jerusalem district, only 9% of OHCA patients present with ventricular tachycardia/ventricular fibrillation (VT/VF) as the primary rhythm, whereas 77% present with asystole; this seems primarily to be the result of long collapse-to-arrival times. Nevertheless, overly zealous resuscitation is undertaken in a high proportion of arrests with a futile prognosis, leading to excessive costs.
- Subpopulations for whom intervention is futile/counter-productive are identifiable
- Substantial waste of resources can be avoided
- Optimization of emergency medical services (EMS) reorganization without adding resources is an achievable goal