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911 call center, EMS teams change protocol in response to corona virus

Members of the North Sanpete Ambulance Association stand ready with protective masks. Changes to procedure for MES agencies during the health crisis are being adopted to help slow the spread of COVID-19.

 

911 call center, EMS teams change

protocol in response to corona virus

 

By Robert Green

Staff writer

4/02/2020

 

Emergency Medical Services (EMS) in Sanpete County have instituted some important changes in order to minimize the spread of COVID-19.

According to G.J. Willden, medical director of the Sanpete County Ambulance Associations and M.D. from Gunnison, people who call 911 may be treated a little differently because of precautions concerning the new coronavirus pandemic.

“COVID-19 has resulted in changes with how EMS agencies function in Sanpete County,” Dr. Willden said.

Some of the major changes are:

When you call 911, regardless of the reason for your call, you may be asked questions regarding symptoms of COVID-19.

You may receive a phone call from an EMS provider who will discuss your symptoms and possible treatment.

If EMS providers come to your home, they may ask to meet you outside and maintain a 6-foot distance initially.

EMS providers will likely be wearing additional protective equipment. Please do not let this worry you.

If your symptoms are minimal and you are at low risk for complications from your condition, you may be asked to monitor your symptoms at home, minimize your contact with others and call 911 again or drive to the closest emergency room if your condition significantly worsens.

These measures have been put into place by EMS agencies throughout Utah, Dr. Willden said. Please know that critically ill or injured patients will be transported to the emergency department. You may call 1-800-456-7707 for additional information about COVID-19.

Dr. Willden said the EMS providers are proud to serve the citizens of Sanpete County. They include the Ephraim Ambulance Association, Gunnison Hospital Ambulance, Manti City Ambulance Association, North Sanpete Ambulance Association and Sanpete County Dispatch.