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The Capital Region of Denmark - a part of Copenhagen University Hospital
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Implications for cardiac arrest coverage using straight-line versus route distance to nearest automated external defibrillator

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AIM: Quantifying the ratio describing the difference between "true route" and "straight-line" distances from out-of-hospital cardiac arrests (OHCAs) to the closest accessible automated external defibrillator (AED) can help correct likely overestimations in AED coverage. Furthermore, we aimed to examine to what extent the closest AED based on true route distance differed from the closest AED using "straight-line".

METHODS: OHCAs (1994-2016) and AEDs (2016) in Copenhagen, Denmark and in Toronto, Canada (2007-2015 and 2015, respectively) were identified. Three distances were calculated between OHCA and target AED: 1) the straight-line distance ("straight-line") to the closest AED, 2) the corresponding true route distance to the same AED ("true route"), and 3) the closest AED based only on true route distance ("shortest true route"). The ratio between "true route" and "straight-line" distance was calculated and differences in AED coverage (an OHCA ≤100m of an accessible AED) were examined.

RESULTS: The "straight-line" AED coverage of 100m was 24.2% (n=2008/8295) in Copenhagen and 6.9% (n=964/13916) in Toronto. The corresponding "true route" distance reduced coverage to 9.5% (n=786) and 3.8% (n=529), respectively. The median ratio between "true route" and "straight-line" distance was 1.6 in Copenhagen and 1.4 in Toronto. In 26.1% (n=2167) and 22.9% (n=3181) of all Copenhagen and Toronto OHCAs respectively, the closest AED in "shortest true route" was different than the closest AED initially found by "straight-line".

CONCLUSIONS: Straight-line distance is not an accurate measure of distance and overestimates the actual AED coverage compared to a more realistic true route distance by a factor 1.4-1.6.

Original languageEnglish
JournalResuscitation
Volume167
Pages (from-to)326-335
Number of pages10
ISSN0300-9572
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021

    Research areas

  • AED, Automated External Defibrillator, Geographical Information Systems, OHCA, Out-of-hospital Cardiac Arrest, Public Access Defibrillation, Resuscitation

ID: 66933707