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Exploring Current Data Collection Practices on the Effectiveness of Dispatcher-Assisted Telephone Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation

Sep 06, 2018|AEDR 2018 Vol. 6 Issue 2|Original Research
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In medical emergencies involving out-of-hospital cardiac arrests (OHCAs), bystanders reasonably but sometimes incorrectly expect a call to 911 will result in a dispatcher guiding the caller through the steps of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). For the public safety answering points (PSAPs) providing dispatcher-assisted telephone-CPR (tCPR), data was collected in an attempt to evaluate the effectiveness of tCPR and its role in patient survival. Three PSAPs, one emergency medical service (EMS) department, and sixteen fire departments from the Des Moines, Iowa, metropolitan area were surveyed. Many were eliminated from the final evaluation due to their status as volunteer departments or lack of available data. In all, one PSAP, one EMS department, and one fire department could be analyzed. Together they reported only 84 OHCAs, 13 instances of tCPR, and one surviving patient. While the data was insufficient for evaluation of the effectiveness of tCPR, it was valuable in exposing a need for the creation of a standardized data collection database.