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Abstract

Introduction: The evaluation of emergency calls received by Emergency Medical Communication Centers (EMCCs) is the first and most basic step to activating the rescue chain. It also represents an essential prerequisite for an optimal management of critical patients, by optimizing the methods of public medical response and management time.

Objective: The goal of the study is to evaluate whether the introduction of the Medical Priority Dispatch System™ (MPDS)® made more homogenous the evaluation of emergency calls among the five EMCCs in Liguria (primary) and among the EMCC’s call takers in Genoa.

Methods: The study retrospectively examines the assigned priority code in 2,480,267 emergency calls managed by the five EMCCs in Liguria from 2002 to 2014, and 815,086 emergency calls processed by EMCC’s calltakers in Genoa.

Result: By comparing periods without using MPDS (WO-MPDS) and with the support of MPDS (W-MPDS) significant differences are evident in the uniformity of evaluation (coefficient of variation) of red codes (48,82% ± 9 , 08% vs. 27.19 ± 4.51; p = 0.003), yellow codes (16.24% ± 6.62% vs. 8.82 ± 0.51; p = 0.003), and green codes (33.45% ± 10.91 vs. 12.43 ± 1.61; p = 0.003); these differences can be demonstrated even among EMCC call takers in Genoa.

Conclusion: The use of the MPDS has significantly improved the uniformity of evaluation of emergency calls among EMCCs in Liguria and among EMCC’s calltakers in Genoa.