Hungarian National Ambulance Service’s Division of non-emergency patient transport:

The regulations of non-emergency patient transport changed drastically on May 2, 2012 with regard to the justification of ambulance use for non-emergency patient transport, and the authority of the responsible doctor or other medical staff requesting the services.
The majority of non-emergency patient transport are performed by non-government ambulances; however, responsibility of dispatch services, oversight of operations, and coordination of activities are performed by the National Ambulance Service’s non-emergency ambulance operations. The implementation of the new responsibilities was done in a stepwise manner in accordance with the implementation of the new and the corresponding budget allocations. The first responsibility that the National Ambulance Service’s non-emergency patient transport coordinators assumed in 2011 was that of coordination of long distance transfers bridging multiple counties. On January 1, 2012, the oversight of all transfers financed by the National Health Trust (OEP) was performed by the National Ambulance Service and by May 2012, all dispatch services and coordination of private ambulance providers performing the transfers was performed by the National Ambulance Service’s Division of Non-emergency Patient Transport Operations.

As of May 2, 2012, all non-emergency patient transports have to be requested through the National Ambulance Service’s non-emergency transport dispatch, who will coordinate through a private contracted, non-emergency transport ambulance company. For all basic non-emergency transports, a central number available nationwide needs to be called, the number is 1820, or after pre-registration, the transport can be done online at: If higher level transport is with advanced equipment or with higher level care, than a National Ambulance Service Non-emergency Patient Transport Unit needs to be ordered at +36-1-3111-666.

The changes in the NM Ministry Regulation 19/1998 (VI.3.) do not affect other aspects of non-emergency patient transport, whereby the individual ordering the patient transport must take into account the following parameters:
Patient Transport Guidelines:

19/1998. (VI. 3.) NM Ministry Regulations pertaining to Patient Transport requirements section 2 a) Patient Transport: Health Ministry Regulation Eütv. section 97 (1)-(3) requires that the patient must be
aa) located in their place of residence,
ab) located in the service area of the responding basic transport ambulance, or
ac) transported for multiple treatment/therapies or to a higher level of care facility or returned home from a higher level of care facility or emergency department after acute treatment, exam, or intervention
(1) Patient Transport can be classified according to the following levels of urgency:
a) Within 6 hours
b) Within 24 hours
c) Pickup at a certain time or day. These transports can also be scheduled as recurring for chronic treatments or procedures
(2) Patient Transport can be classified according to the following levels of medical need:
a) Care or intervention needed during transport
b) Patient transportation does not require a vehicle capable of transporting a caregiver beside the patient
(3) Patient Transportation can also be classified according to the type of vehicle required for the transportation:
a) Ambulance
b) Stretcher van or vehicle capable of carrying a patient in a supine position
c) Vehicle with standard seating arrangement
(4) Patient Transportation can be classified by how many patients need transport:
a) Single patient transport
b) Grouped patient
– Long Distance Patient Transport must be completed within the 72 hour limit set in the Ministry regulation.
– For therapeutic patient transport, the entity responsible for ordering the transport must also consult with the institution performing the therapeutic interventions as well as the EMS Agency’s non-emergency transport dispatch coordinator.
– If there are any changes to the scheduled patient transport (amendments, cancellations), please report it promptly to the National Ambulance Service’s non-emergency transport dispatch coordinator.