Struck down by a sudden, lethal illness or injury, patients require immediate access to specific critical care specialty services, the highest level of medical care available in modern healthcare. If immediate access is not possible, because of circumstance and/ or geography, then patients experience a sequence of rapid and increasingly sophisticated interventions and transportation by emergency medical services (EMS) until the appropriate level of critical care is reached. This sequential response of healthcare systems to time-dependent emergencies often results in delayed access to these critical-care services when they are needed most.