The Department of Health estimates that around 4,000 people attending Accident and Emergency departments each year in the UK are diagnosed with carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning.

However, accurate numbers are difficult to determine because the signs and symptoms of CO poisoning are very similar to other common illnesses and as such, are easily misdiagnosed.

This study aimed to provide evidence as to whether CO screening by Paramedics attending patients in their home could be effectively carried out, and so become part of the routine observations that are undertaken.

In addition to this, by using ambient air CO analysers, this study aimed to identify the number of patients exposed to CO in the 999 emergency ambulance environment and explore the experience of CO exposed patients and their clinical presentation.

The study aimed to produce valuable data on the incidence of CO exposure in the targeted area in the East of England Ambulance Service. The anticipated data sample was around 20,000 measurements taken over the 12-month study.


An incidence density of 4 patients per 10,000 incidents attended, had been exposed to CO at levels which would not have been suspected at the point of the 999 ambulance call.

Ambulance clinicians would appreciate greater awareness of CO, and supported the case for pre-hospital CO monitoring.


Please download the full report below.

Final Report

Download  CO Research Circle