Is Emergency Medical Dispatcher Low-Acuity Code Selection Influenced by a User-Interface Software Modification?

Sick Person (Specific Diagnosis) is one of the most commonly used Chief Complaint Protocols in the Medical Priority Dispatch System™. Within the Sick Person Protocol, the 26-A-1 coding represents a group of patients with no specific identifiable complaint. This vague categorization presents a problem for dispatch systems and EMS responders alike, since so little is captured about the patient’s true condition. s: The objective of this study was to determine whether changing the order of the “No” answer choice on the...

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Comparison of Emergency Dispatchers’ Perceptions of Training Experiences with Perceptions of Emergency Communication Center Managers, Supervisors, and Trainers

Training that aligns with learners’ expectations and preferences can help improve job satisfaction and reduce turnover. Previously published results described the preferences of supervisors and trainers. However, little is known about emergency dispatchers’ own preferences and expectations regarding training topics, styles, or delivery methods. s: The objective of this study was to describe the training methods and topics emergency dispatchers find most effective, what characteristics define successful versus unsuccessful...

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Finding Control in the Chaos: A Case for Mindfulness in the Dispatch Center

Download Original Paper Emergency dispatchers serve as a unique population to examine the impact of exposure to trauma given their continuous indirect exposure to stressful and traumatic calls. Furthermore, the unique experiences of emergency dispatchers warrants consideration of preventative measures to mitigate the negative outcomes associated with the job. Methods: Due to the continuous stress and exposure to trauma, present perceived control is offered as a variable of interest. Present perceived control (PPC) is examined in two studies by the present...

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The “Four-Second Rule” for Identifying the Active Silent 911 Caller

With advances in wireless technology, the volume of unintentional calls, or misdials, to 911 call centers has steadily increased over the past 10 years. While call centers have been working to manage call volume, there is very little systematic research on how to develop policy for handling Active Silent calls where callers may be unable to verbally communicate. s: The primary objective in this study was to first establish how dispatchers manage nuisance calls, and then provide a systematic way of determining how dispatchers can maximize their opportunities...

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Multi-Protocol Discipline Agencies Use Different Protocols To Process Traffic Accidents

Traffic incidents (collisions and crashes) are among the most common call types handled by Emergency Communication Centers (ECCs). They are also among the most complex call types because they represent such a range of possible situations. ECCs that handle calls in multiple disciplines (medical, fire, and law enforcement) may have multiple protocols available for handling traffic incidents because the Medical Priority Dispatch System, Police Priority Dispatch System, and Fire Priority Dispatch System each contains its own traffic and transportation incident protocol....

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Evaluation Variability Of Emergency Medical Calls Among Emergency Medical Communication Centers In Liguria, Italy

The evaluation of emergency calls received by Emergency Medical Communication Centers (EMCCs) is the first and basic step for activating the chain of survival. It also represents an essential prerequisite for optimal response to and management of critical patients. : The objective of this study was to evaluate whether the introduction of a single, structured, and standardized emergency medical dispatch system provided a more uniform evaluation of all emergency calls among five EMCCs in Liguria, Italy. Methods: The study retrospectively examined the assigned...

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Weapons Reported On-Scene by Callers to Emergency Police Dispatch

Providing information about possible weapons on scene is an essential objective of police dispatching and clearly valuable to officer safety. However, up to now, no information has been available about how often callers report weapons as “involved or mentioned” in an incident, what types of weapons are most commonly reported, or which incident types most commonly have reported weapons associated with them. : The primary objective of this study is to determine which types of weapons are reported most often and on which Police Priority Dispatch System (PPDS®)...

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Assessing the Impact of Opening Greetings in Handling Emergency Calls: Genova 118 Experience

The manner in which calls are handled at the emergency telecommunication center has a significant role in effective management of assistance on the scene. The main information needed to start a response is the location of the incident, which usually means the complete address. The Genova 118 Center has recently modified its standard greeting from “Genova 118” (STD1) to “Genova 118, where do I send the ambulance?” (STD2). s: To verify whether the new standard reduces the time needed to acquire a complete address during an emergency call. Methods: The...

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Differences in PTSD Symptomatology Between Combat Veterans and Emergency Dispatchers

The current study examines posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptom clusters in the context of indirect exposure and compares symptom expression between emergency dispatchers and veterans. Given that a dispatcher’s job is inherently different from that of our military, it would be expected that their PTSD symptoms are different as well. : Understanding differences in presenting PTSD symptoms in emergency dispatchers relative to a group of veterans for the purposes of providing insight into prevention and treatment. We hypothesized that emergency dispatchers...

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Characteristics of Acute Myocardial Infarction Cases Coded as Low-Acuity at Dispatch

The objectives of this study were to compare hospital-confirmed acute myocardial infarction (AMI) outcomes with emergency medical dispatch (EMD) low acuity cases and to identify any common characteristics of the AMIs assigned to those low-acuity codes. Methods: This was a retrospective study utilizing EMD, emergency medical services (EMS), and hospital discharge datasets, collected at two emergency communication centers in Salt Lake County, Utah. The study sample included all hospital-confirmed medical cases that arrived to the hospital via EMS. Primary outcome measures...

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