9-1-1 Changes Could Save a Life

By: Kristen Ross
By: Kristen Ross

They're the ones who answer in times of emergency and send out responders in those crucial moments.

Now, the Brazos County 9-1-1 will be enacting a new emergency medical dispatch program, designed to give as much information as possible to responders.

"They have to be able to interrogate the caller, get the caller to explain the symptoms so they can classify the calls," said Elizabeth Godwin, the executive director at the Brazos County Emergency Communications District. "Once they classify the calls, they will ask specific questions in order to solicit the information to provide to the emergency responders."

Callers can expect more questions to be asked by the communication specialists, and in a specific order. However, officials say these are important because the more information gathered, the easier it is to for the specialists to understand the severity of the situation.

"For instance, we have two calls come in at the same time," said Godwin. "This system will be able to evaluate the type of call and recommend who should be dispatched first."

All 9-1-1 communications specialists recently went through a three-day training program to become advanced emergency medical dispatchers. Now, they can offer medical help over the phone until responders arrive.

"That's what the intense training was geared for," said Godwin. "We will be giving specific instructions, such as controlled bleeding and CPR instructions, and even child birth."

So the next time you call with an emergency and you are being prodded for information, know that the Brazos County 9-1-1 dispatchers are asking questions that could save a life.

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