911 call services is a crucial service that is used by many governments, local, state, and national governments, to ensure that the ruled can call for help in times of emergencies. The call centers act as a tool to ensure that people who require emergency assistance are linked to the relevant emergency service providers. A challenge arises in managing these call centers. The reason is that some calls made are irrelevant or bogus, while other calls, although relevant require less attention than others. The difficulty arises in determining what calls receive higher priority than others, and what calls report actual emergency. The discussion will try to establish what criterion would help in prioritizing the emergency call.
911 calls services are reported to have helped in avoiding damages in times of emergencies. Additionally, these services are crucial in mitigating the damage when a risk has occurred; the effects would be severe if no help were offered. The purpose of the call centers is to provide assistance in helping the victims reach the relevant authorities for help. However, a challenge of prioritizing arises when dispatching the help required. This is because the some emergency needs require quicker attention than others. However, the difficulty arises since all humans have the right to protection as well as the protection of their property. Thus, a question would arise what criterion would be used to prioritize.
According to Dane County, the primary objective of these services is to gather appropriate information that would be necessary to send the right help to the right place at the right time. To achieve this objective, various institutions have established the appropriate systems. Criteria based dispatch recognizes that the support needed by a patient and the urgency of the patient care should be determined by factors that relate to the level of response (Seattle & King County).
In Stanislaus, a consultant made several recommendations regarding the call center services in order to ensure that the dispatch is efficient and effective. The recommendations revolved around the costing and allocation of resources (Dispatch Magazine On-Line). The State of New Jersey, (Pg. 2) provides that an emergency medical dispatch guide cards that outline the manner in which the way in which medical emergencies should be prioritized for dispatches.
In this regard, the call operators have to establish the state of risk to which the caller is exposed. According to Messinger S. et al. (Pg. 5), the operator must first determine whether the events being reported either ongoing or have just occurred. However, the operator must establish a good rapport with the victims. This aims at trying to calm the victims in order to acquire as much relevant information as possible (Surrey-RCMP; Victoria Police Department). If the event is ongoing, the emergency agencies should be realized as the operator continues to converse with the victim. The aim is to try and mitigate and minimize the effects of the event as much as possible (Soble). Thus, the operator must identify the place where the event is occurring before everything (Rianharet).
In summary, the results from various studies indicate that the mechanism of determining how to prioritize the response level can be briefed as follows:
““E” (Echo) Response: Life Threatening Emergency—patient not breathing (choking, hanging, drowning), person trapped in sinking a vehicle. “D” (Delta) Response: Life Threatening Emergency—Chest pain, difficulty breathing, unconsciousness, seizures, dangerous bleeding, structure fire, serious vehicle crashes. “C” (Charlie) Response: Potentially Life Threatening Emergency—Difficulty breathing, non-responsive, stroke, substance overdose, diabetic problems, serious injury, fire alarms, wires down, fuel spill. “B” (Bravo) Response: Unknown Situation, Serious bleeding/injury, pregnancy, psychiatric problems, outside gas leak, lightning strike, small outside fire. “A” (Alpha) Response: Non-life threatening situation with a likely potential for patient transport, citizen assist calls. “Ω” (Omega) Response: These are calls for such things as accidental poisonings, which may be referred to other agencies, like Poison Control.” (Dane County)
911 emergency call centers are of crucial help in avoiding, reducing, or mitigating damages that result from risks that are categorized as emergencies. In this light, the risks require to be ranked in a manner that it would be easier to determine the events that require higher priority in terms of time and personnel (Victoria Police Department). Various agencies, like 911 call centers, have established guidelines that would help to achieve the events prioritization.
- The basic way to achieve the most efficient manner of prioritizing emergencies would be through training and development of the operators.
- Clear mechanisms should be established explaining the criteria for ranking events that are likely to cause damages to the population and property.
- The operators should always aim to calm the victims, mostly those who are under violence risk. This would help to control the victims not to escalate.
- Operators should be encouraged to ask the victims as many questions as possible so that they can appropriately rank the event correctly.
Dane County,. ‘Priority Dispatch’. Dane911.com. N.p., 2015. Web. 27 Feb. 2015.
Dispatch Magazine On-Line,. ‘911 Dispatch On-Line’. 911dispatch.com. N.p., 2015. Web. 27 Feb. 2015.
‘Jackie Hopper, 911 Call Operator’. Texas Monthly September (2010): n. pag. Web. 27 Feb. 2015.
Messinger S., et al. ‘The Distribution Of Emergency Police Dispatch Call Incident Types And Priority Levels Within The Police Priority Dispatch System’. International Academies of Emergency Dispatch (2013): 1-11. Web. 27 Feb. 2015.
Rianharet, Dawn. ‘The Evolving Method Of Response To Active Shooter Calls’. Equature Blog 2015. Web. 27 Feb. 2015.
Seattle & King County,. ‘Emergency Medical Dispatch (EMD) Program’. Kingcounty.gov. N.p., 2015. Web. 27 Feb. 2015.
Soble, Ronald L. ‘Help Arrived–And Then Left : For Police Officers, ‘You’re Damned If You Do And Damned If You Don’t.’ But A Woman Is Dead, And Her Family Is Questioning A Police Decision.’. Los Angeles Times 1988. Web. 27 Feb. 2015.
State of New Jersey,. State Of New Jersey Emergency Medical Dispatch Guidecards Approved. 1st ed. New Jersey: State of New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services Office of Emergency Medical Services, 2012. Web. 27 Feb. 2015.
Surrey-RCMP,. ‘Prioritizing 911 Calls’. Surrey.rcmp-grc.gc.ca. N.p., 2012. Web. 27 Feb. 2015.
Victoria Police Department,. ‘911 Communications Centre’. Vicpdcanada.com. N.p., 2015. Web. 27 Feb. 2015.