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Beijing Strives to Cut Emergency Response Time
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Officials are aiming to slash the emergency response time in the Chinese capital Beijing to six minutes from the current 13 minutes.

The Municipal Health Bureau is planning to increase the number of emergency aid centers to 136 in urban areas, with one serving each sub-district, and to 58 in the suburbs.

This will mean that there are 50,000 residents to every ambulance and Beijingers will have access to first-aid services within an average distance of four to seven kilometers.

There is still a huge gap between the current emergency response time of 13 minutes in Beijing and the five minutes as is the case in some developed countries, said a bureau official.

Zhao Yongchun, director of the Beijing Emergency Medical Rescue Center, said that every sub-district will have at least one ambulance equipped with four doctors, four nurses and four drivers working in shift.

(Xinhua News Agency February 12, 2006)

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