Effect of requiring a general practitioner at scenes of serious injury: A systematic review
Background - In Norway, each municipality is responsible for providing first line emergency healthcare, and it is mandatory to have a primary care physician/general practitioner on call continuously. This mandate ensures that a physician can assist patients and ambulance personnel at the site of severe injuries or illnesses. The compulsory presence of the general practitioner at the scene could affect different parts of patient treatment, and it might save resources by obviating resources from secondary healthcare, like pre‐hospital anaesthesiologists and other specialized resources. This systematic review aimed to examine how survival, time spent at the scene, the choice of transport destination, assessment of urgency, the number of admissions, and the number of cancellations of specialized pre‐hospital resources were affected by the presence of a general practitioner at the scene of a suspected severe injury.
Methods - We searched for published and planned systematic reviews and primary studies in the Cochrane Library, Medline, Embase, OpenGrey, GreyLit and trial registries. The search was completed in December 2017. Two individuals independently screened the references and assessed the eligibility of all potentially relevant studies.
Results - The search for systematic reviews and primary studies identified 5981 articles. However, no studies met the pre‐defined inclusion criteria.
Conclusion - No studies met our inclusion criteria; consequently, it remains uncertain how the presence of a general practitioner at the injury scene might affect the selected outcomes.