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Traffic killing heart victims February 6, 2008

Posted by grhomeboy in Health & Fitness.
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The inability of ambulances to reach hospitals quickly, due to Athens’s traffic problem, is resulting in around 1,000 heart attack fatalities every year, cardiologists told a seminar yesterday.

The improved coordination of the ambulance service, including the use of more motorcycles to weave through traffic jams, could avert these deaths, according to Dimitris Kremastinos, president of the Hellenic Cardiological Society. Six out of 10 fatal heart attack patients die before they reach the hospital, he said.

The National First Aid Center (EKAB) now has 15 motorcycles operating in Athens. In an extended network, motorcyclists would be stationed around Athens and informed of heart attack patients whom they would collect and take to the nearest ambulance or hospital. “It is a simple matter of coordination, we could start saving lives tomorrow” Kremastinos said.

Another 3,000 heart attack fatalities could be avoided every year if smoking bans were imposed in public places, medics said.

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