Japanese researchers have developed a computer program which may be able tell from an emergency call if you are about to die. Research published in the open access journal BMC Emergency Medicine shows that a computer algorithm is able to predict the patient's risk of dying at the time of the emergency call.
Kenji Ohshige and a team of researchers from the Yokohama City University School of Medicine in Japan assessed the new Yokohama computer-based triage emergency system from its inception on October 1, 2008 until March 31, 2009, collecting information from over 60,000 emergency calls.
For each call, triage information was entered into the computer system, which then categorized patients according to the severity of their condition. The researchers then compared the computer-estimated threat of dying at the time of the emergency call with the actual patients’ condition upon arrival at the hospital emergency department. They found that the algorithm was effective in assessing the life risk of a patient with over 80 percent sensitivity.
Ambulance response time has risen rapidly with the increased demand for this service in Japan.