Is it possible to safely triage callers to EMS dispatch centers to alternative resources?

Terri Schmidt, Keith W. Neely, Annette L. Adams, Craig Newgard, Lynn Wittwer, Marc Muhr, Robert Norton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objective. To develop guidelines allowing emergency medical services (EMS) dispatchers to safely match callers to an EMS response or, alternatively, to a nontraditional resource. Methods. This was a prospective cohort study of callers to an urban EMS dispatch center and an associated review of EMS patient care forms and emergency department (ED) patient care records. The following five "nature codes" (patient chief complaints) were included: back pain, fall, bleeding or laceration, sick, and trauma. Callers included in the study had been assigned the lowest severity level (Alpha), according to existing dispatch criteria. An a priori list of EMS and ED "important findings," indicating need for an EMS response, was used as the outcome variable. Classification and regression tree (CART) analysis was used to develop a decision rule to further identify a low-risk subgroup of patients who could potentially be served by alternative resources. Results. From November 1, 1998, to May 31, 1999, 656 subjects were entered into the study, including 263 males (40%) and 389 females (59%). The mean age was 51 years (range, 0-101 years). One hundred twenty-five (19%) callers had an important EMS finding, including the administration of comfort medications, morphine, benzodiazepines, and droperidol. Forty-six subjects (7%) had an important ED finding. When EMS and ED findings were combined, 158 subjects (24%) had an "important finding." Using CART analysis, having an age

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)368-374
Number of pages7
JournalPrehospital Emergency Care
Volume7
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2003

Fingerprint

Triage
Emergency Medical Services
Hospital Emergency Service
Patient Care
Regression Analysis
Droperidol
Emergency Medical Dispatch
Lacerations
Back Pain
Benzodiazepines
Morphine
Cohort Studies
Prospective Studies
Guidelines
Hemorrhage
Wounds and Injuries

Keywords

  • Dispatch
  • EMS
  • Triage

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency Medicine

Cite this

Schmidt, T., Neely, K. W., Adams, A. L., Newgard, C., Wittwer, L., Muhr, M., & Norton, R. (2003). Is it possible to safely triage callers to EMS dispatch centers to alternative resources? Prehospital Emergency Care, 7(3), 368-374.

Is it possible to safely triage callers to EMS dispatch centers to alternative resources? / Schmidt, Terri; Neely, Keith W.; Adams, Annette L.; Newgard, Craig; Wittwer, Lynn; Muhr, Marc; Norton, Robert.

In: Prehospital Emergency Care, Vol. 7, No. 3, 07.2003, p. 368-374.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Schmidt, T, Neely, KW, Adams, AL, Newgard, C, Wittwer, L, Muhr, M & Norton, R 2003, 'Is it possible to safely triage callers to EMS dispatch centers to alternative resources?', Prehospital Emergency Care, vol. 7, no. 3, pp. 368-374.
Schmidt, Terri ; Neely, Keith W. ; Adams, Annette L. ; Newgard, Craig ; Wittwer, Lynn ; Muhr, Marc ; Norton, Robert. / Is it possible to safely triage callers to EMS dispatch centers to alternative resources?. In: Prehospital Emergency Care. 2003 ; Vol. 7, No. 3. pp. 368-374.
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