Emergency Medical Dispatch (EMD) is a vital component of any EMS system. An EMD program should provide written, medically approved guidelines or protocols that emergency medical dispatchers use to effectively deliver pre-arrival emergency telephone instructions, including CPR. The CPR instructions provided by dispatch, and subsequently delivered to the patient by the caller, is known as Dispatch Assisted CPR.
Time from collapse to initiation of CPR is a critical factor in determining survival from out of hospital cardiac arrest. Providing CPR instructions by telephone immediately after someone calls 911 is a critical element that decreases time from collapse to the initiation of CPR. The average response time for most EMS systems in the United States is 4-6 minutes. An assertive and well-trained dispatcher can recognize cardiac arrest, and have the bystander performing COR in less than one minute from the time the call is received. Studies have shown that Dispatch Assisted CPR can improve the percentage of cardiac arrest cases that receive bystander CPR, and overall survival (Resuscitation. 2008 Oct; 79(1):97-102).
Dispatch Assisted CPR is one component of MiResCu’s system change approach to increased survivability from cardiac arrest.