Medical director of the rescue service

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The Medical Director Rescue Service (ÄLRD) does not have an operational but an administrative function within the rescue service in Germany . This distinguishes him from the emergency physicians and chief emergency physicians , who have a direct role in operations.

Tasks and associations

The medical director of the rescue service is responsible for medical quality management and the overall conception of patient care and support in the rescue service. He is authorized to issue instructions for this. Since the rescue service in Germany is the legislative competence of the federal states, the ÄLRD - if it exists - is defined in the respective state rescue service laws.

In 1994, the German Medical Association - confirmed by the "Emergency / Disaster Medicine and Sanitary System" committee in 2006 - made a demand for the institutionalization of a "Medical Director Rescue Service" on a regional and supraregional level who is responsible for the medical control of the rescue service and for its effectiveness and Efficiency of preclinical emergency medical patient care and care is responsible.

The first 5 functionaries of the ÄLRD joined forces in 1995 to form the “Working Group Medical Leaders Rescue Service”. In the meantime, the ÄLRD consults at the state level and at the federal level in the state associations and in the Federal Association of Medical Heads of Rescue Service and coordinate rescue service concepts, problems and procedures with one another. The main focus is on questions of organization and financing. In 2005, the “Federal Working Group for Medical Leaders Rescue Service eV” (BAK ÄLRD) was founded in Cologne. In 2007, this working group in Cologne became the "Federal Association of Medical Head Rescue Service", of which 163 ÄLRD belonged as members in September 2009. Numerous state working groups also renamed themselves, following the example of the federal working group, into state associations "Medical Director Rescue Service".


The German Medical Association recommends a 40-hour qualification to become the Medical Director of the Rescue Service and regular refresher courses of at least ten hours. Furthermore, the qualification as a chief emergency doctor, many years of experience in preclinical and clinical emergency medicine as well as completed training in a field related to emergency or intensive medicine are required.


In Bavaria, according to the Bavarian Rescue Service Act (as of January 1, 2012), 78 medical directors are appointed in 26 rescue service areas.

The ÄLRD have the task of ensuring and improving the quality of rescue services. You should in particular

  1. monitor patient care,
  2. optimize operational control,
  3. accompany the training and further education,
  4. monitor the cooperation between emergency services and treatment facilities and
  5. give professional advice to the special-purpose associations.

The ÄLRD has authority to carry out its tasks. He himself is only subject to instructions from the district and state representative.

North Rhine-Westphalia

In North Rhine-Westphalia, according to a survey by the Quality Management Working Group of the Working Group of Emergency Doctors in North Rhine-Westphalia (AGNNW) on structural quality in the NRW emergency medical service at the time, at best two thirds of the NRW regional authorities had medical directors for the rescue service, some of whom were volunteer or part-time worked with little time.

Currently (September 30, 2010) on the homepage of the federal association ÄLRD for North Rhine-Westphalia there are 46 ÄLRD in 54 districts and urban districts who work in different job models (provision of personnel from a hospital, full-time or part-time employment with the emergency services provider, freelance fee-based work) .

In the new Rescue Act of North Rhine-Westphalia, the medical director of the rescue service should be considered as the person responsible for medical quality management in the rescue service.

Individual evidence

  1. a b c Recommendation of the German Medical Association for the Medical Director of the Rescue Service (as of May 26, 2013)
  2. Recommendations of the German Medical Association on the qualification of Medical Director Rescue Service (ÄLRD) (as of December 12, 2014)
  3. Art. 12 para. 1 BayRDG

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