Future ambulances could have ejector driver seats and a removable treatment shell that can be left at the scene
The ‘Smart Pods’ concept was designed by students at the Royal College of Art and Loughborough University with input from clinical experts.
The new models will enable emergency care practitioners to assess and treat more people on scene, instead of taking them to hospital. The designs include off-road features and adaptable treatments spaces that enable 360° access to the patient.
Research shows that up to 50% of patients currently taken to hospital following a 999 call could be treated at home if the correct supporting technologies were in place.
Professor Dale Harrow, head of vehicle design for the project, said: “Our research shows that delivering urgent healthcare more efficiently presents many opportunities, especially in terms of improving the safety of the patients and staff and causing fewer journeys.”
The Smart Pods research was funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council.
An exhibition of the designs called ‘Healthcare on the Move’ will be held at the Royal College of Art from 6-8 April.