Author: Dr. Mark Conrad Fivaz

A Case with a Sting in the Tail

Clinical call handlers use a clinical decision support software system (CDSS) called the Emergency Communication Nurse System™ (ECNS™) to further triage calls considered eligible for secondary triage post the interaction the patient or caller had with the Emergency Medical Dispatcher (EMD). EMDs use a primary emergency triage system called Medical Priority Dispatch System (MPDS®) to triage callers accessing 911 services. This call involved a teenage boy calling 999 in England, UK, on behalf of his friend (also a teenage boy) who was stung on the palmar side of his right wrist by...

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Triage Nurse in a 911 Center Effectively Handles Case of Insect Bites

On June 26th, mid-morning, a 47 year old male patient called into the 911 center with a complaint of being bitten by insects all over his body. Initially the caller wanted an ambulance to take him to the emergency room (ER), but he had advised the emergency medical dispatcher (EMD) that the rash and bites had been going on for a while. In Louisville, all medical 911 calls are triaged at the MetroSafe 911 center by a certified EMD using the Medical Priority Dispatch System™ (MPDS®) software, ProQA®. The end result of the EMD triage is an assigned (alphanumeric) determinant code that...

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Research Challenges and Opportunities in Emergency Nurse Telephone Triage

One of the most important elements of the scientific field is the use of clear, commonly-accepted definitions that can be used to measure processes and create meaningful change. These well-defined metrics allow us to confidently progress by building on previous work carried out by others. Previous authors1 have already identified that research in the dispatch  center should focus specifically on the development of performance measures for use in performance management, audit, and research.  The question then becomes, which measures should we focus upon, how do we define them, and what value...

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