Here are three questions to consider when determining whether to call an ambulance:
1. Does the patient’s condition seem life-threatening, or could it worsen and become so on the way to the hospital?
2. Could the patient benefit from having a trained emergency medical technician’s skills and equipment, as well as contact with the hospital, on the way there?
3. Could traffic, weather conditions or distance make the trip to the medical care provider take longer for a regular vehicle than an ambulance with lights and sirens, and a trained driver?
If the answers to these questions is “yes,” here are three tips to remember when calling for the ambulance:
1. Speaking clearly and calmly, providing the name, location and phone number of the person needing the ambulance and describing the problem.
2. Remain on the line until the dispatcher tells you to hang up. The dispatcher might need more information from you in order to most quickly find the person needing the ambulance.
3. Teach children living in the home how to make an emergency call, in case the adult living there isn’t able to use the phone in an emergency.