Background: Dispatch services (DS's) form an integral part of emergency medical service (EMS) systems. The role of a dispatcher has also evolved into a crucial link in patient care delivery, particularly in dispatcher assisted cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (DACPR) during out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA). Yet, there has been a paucity of research into the emerging area of dispatch science in Asia. This paper compares the characteristics of DS's, and state of implementation of DACPR within the Pan-Asian Resuscitation Outcomes (PAROS) network. Methods: A cross-sectional descriptive survey addressing population characteristics, DS structures and levels of service, state of DACPR implementation (including protocols and quality improvement programs) among PAROS DS's. Results: 9 DS's responded, representing a total of 23 dispatch centres from 9 countries that serve over 80 million people. Most PAROS DS's operate a tiered dispatch response, have implemented medical oversight, and tend to be staffed by dispatchers with a predominantly medical background. Almost all PAROS DS's have begun tracking key EMS indicators. 77.8% (n = 7) of PAROS DS's have introduced DACPR. Of the DS's that have rolled out DACPR, 71.4% (n = 5) provided instructions in over one language. All DS's that implemented DACPR and provided feedback to dispatchers offered feedback on missed OHCA recognition. The majority of DS's (83.3%; n = 5) that offered DACPR and provided feedback to dispatchers also implemented corrective feedback, while 66.7% (n = 4) offered positive feedback. Compression-only CPR was the standard instruction for PAROS DS's. OHCA recognition sensitivity varied widely in PAROS DS's, ranging from 32.6% (95% CI: 29.9-35.5%) to 79.2% (95% CI: 72.9-84.4%). Median time to first compression ranged from 120 s to 220 s. Conclusions: We found notable variations in characteristics and state of DACPR implementation between PAROS DS's. These findings will lay the groundwork for future DS and DACPR studies in the PAROS network.
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