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Table 3 Foremost problems of emergency medicine in Serbia and priorities for system development. A summary of the findings from focus group discussions with providers of emergency medical services.

From: Integrating quantitative and qualitative methodologies for the assessment of health care systems: emergency medicine in post-conflict Serbia

Results of focus group discussions with providers and administrators of emergency medical services
CITED PROBLEMS IN THE SYSTEM OF EMERGENCY MEDICINE IN SERBIA
FINANCE:
    Inadequate financial resources for essential equipment, supplies, and medications
    Discouraged emergency medical service personnel due to meager salaries, difficult work conditions, and large workloads
    Inadequate number of properly equipped ambulances and functioning radio equipment
    Very few computers and no health information systems to track patient health records
ORGANIZATION:
    Need for federal regulation of emergency medical services
    Lack of sufficient protocols for the standardization of triage and treatment
    Inadequate coordination between the institutions providing emergency medical services
    Need for further development of emergency medicine as its own specialty
EDUCATION:
    Inadequate training in emergency medicine during medical school
    Insufficient practical training of emergency medical service providers
    Few opportunities for professional development and continuing education of emergency service providers
    Limited access to medical innovations through the internet, foreign professional journals, conferences, courses, and seminars
    Lack of health management training for leaders of health care institutions
    Need for public education about the emergency medical services system and how to properly utilize them
SUGGESTED PRIORITIES FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF EMERGENCY MEDICINE IN SERBIA
FINANCE:
    Secure funding for essential medications, supplies, equipment, employee salaries, and maintenance of health care facilities
    Consider long-term sources of continuous funding for emergency services such as the government budget instead of the social health insurance fund
ORGANIZATION:
    Develop national protocols for the standardization of emergency triage and treatment
    Further develop emergency medicine as its own specialty
    Clearly define the responsibilities and emergency services of physicians in each health care facility
    Institute a system to promote better coordination between the primary health centers, the hospital emergency departments, and the Emergency Center
    Implement quality control measures for the delivery of emergency medical services
    Establish a health information system to facilitate the tracking of patients
EDUCATION:
    Introduce required continuing medical education supported by legislation that would provide health care professionals leave from work to attend this periodic training
    Provide health care professionals with access to continuing medical education through the internet, professional journals, conferences, seminars, and practical training
    Develop a fellowship program for emergency medicine physicians
    Increase the level of practical emergency medical experience provided in medical school and postgraduate training
    Implement training in BLS, ALS, and emergency triage for all health care providers
    Institute a health management training courses for leaders of health care institutions
    Educate the public regarding the level of emergent care that each health care institution provides and how to properly utilize the available health care services