North Platte, Neb. — Emergency dispatchers at the North Platte 911 Center recently came to the aid of a caller by giving over-the-phone instructions to help save an 18 month old child who stopped breathing.
Shortly after midnight on February 5th, 2019, dispatcher Joan Lerch used a research-based system called the Medical Priority Dispatch System™ (MPDS ® ) that the North Platte 911 Center uses to take and process medical calls.
The MPDS, developed by the nonprofit organization International Academies of Emergency Dispatch ® (IAED™), utilizes a proven set of essential questions to determine the appropriate response emergency dispatchers should send to those in
The system also guides the emergency dispatchers in providing step-by-step instructions for callers and victims while they wait for responders to arrive. These pre-arrival instructions are critical to victims’ safety and play a key role in rendering aid.
For the North Platte 911 Center, the MPDS was integral in helping improve the safety and condition of the 18 month old child. The emergency dispatcher also used the system to calm and provide assurance to the caller.
Lt. Steve Reeves said a lot of callers wonder why so many questions are asked by the dispatcher rather than just sending an ambulance. “Another staff member will dispatch the ambulance while the call taker completes the protocol with the caller. The protocol is important in order to send the proper resources and provide life-saving instructions prior to the arrival of rescue personnel.”
The MPDS allows callers and other bystanders to intervene in serious medical situations, thanks to the guidance of highly trained emergency dispatchers.
These research-based protocols help eliminate the helpless feeling callers could otherwise feel as they wait for paramedics to come on the scene of the incident.
In this case, Joan Lerch, used the instructions to guide the caller through the administration of CPR.
The MPDS brings faster and more efficient medical care to people experiencing life-threatening emergencies. Instead of desperately waiting for paramedics to arrive on the scene, the help can begin from the moment someone makes that 911 call.
The MPDS is developed by the International Academies of Emergency Dispatch ® (IAED™), a nonprofit organization based in Salt Lake City, Utah. The system was originally developed in 1979.
“At the Academy, our goal is to help the emergency dispatcher do his or her job better,” said Dr. Jeff Clawson, Chair, Rules Committee for the IAED Medical Council of Standards.
“This increases safety and effectiveness for the first responders and creates better outcomes for callers.”