The Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office is excited to announce the implementation of a third discipline of the International Academies of Emergency Dispatch® (IAED™) Priority Dispatch System, Emergency Police Dispatch. The Emergency Police Dispatch system went live on Tuesday, June 4, 2019, to better serve the citizens of Ascension Parish in emergency situations.

The Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office is no stranger to the Priority Dispatch System. Beginning in 2010, the Communications Center began using the Emergency Medical Dispatch system, enabling the 911 dispatchers to provide pre-arrival medical instructions for all types of medical incidents, including instructions on how to perform CPR, stop serious bleeding, and even what to do during and after childbirth.

Soon after moving to the new state-of-the-art communications center, a second discipline of the Priority Dispatch System was introduced in 2018. Emergency Fire Dispatch was implemented and provides similar benefits as the medical protocol system, but with the focus being on fire and rescue emergencies.

And now, with the implementation of the new police protocol system, dispatchers are able to accurately assess each emergency situation and send the best police response possible, while safeguarding valuable and limited emergency service resources and increasing safety for both citizens and respondents. One key benefit of the system is that dispatchers can provide a constant stream of crucial and updated scene information to field respondents.

This information will better prepare respondents to give precise assistance when they arrive at the scene. “Dispatchers are able to work through the questions and pre-arrival instructions on their computer screens, making the system even more streamlined and easy  to use. And because the system is fully integrated with the Communications Center’s Computer Aided Dispatch system, respondents have access to the information being gathered by the dispatcher as it happens,” said Sheriff Webre.

Dispatchers using medical, fire, and newly implemented police protocol systems:

• follow internationally recognized standards

• give universal, consistent care and service to every caller

• gather critical emergency call information for respondents

• identify life-threatening situations

• safely prioritize calls for appropriate and fast response

• provide “Zero Minute” Dispatch Life Support using Pre-Arrival and PostDispatch Instructions

When dispatchers answer the call, location and safety are priority. Consistency in questioning will help ensure that the appropriate response is sent. Caller and responder safety is non-negotiable. “This system is another valuable tool for our emergency communicators in the 911 Center enabling them to provide consistent and vital information to the callers and respondents,” added Sheriff Webre.

Each Priority Dispatch System includes a three-day certification training course for emergency dispatchers, and continual quality improvement benchmarks and training. All of the dispatchers in the Communications Division are CPR certified, certified by the IAED™, and must re-certify every two years, completing over 48-hours of continuing dispatch education (CDE) and passing all requirements for IAED™ re-certification.

The constantly evolving Priority Dispatch System will help provide the highest standard of care to the community, allowing dispatchers to better manage limited resources and increase the accuracy and efficiency of the dispatching process.

“As this system of protocol implementation, training, and quality improvement is set into place, you can be confident that our Communications Division is earning the public’s trust with every call and is your best possible source of help during times of an emergency,” said Sheriff Webre.