SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) -- While hundreds of thousands of people are taking preventative measures against COVID-19, so are emergency responders. The CDC is asking 911 centers to ask several coronavirus related questions in order to better determine what first responders are walking into.
Several questions ranging from how high your fever is to have you traveled? Where?
The enhanced caller screening is a proactive approach by the CDC and state of Florida to try to minimize the spread of COVID-19.
Dozens often hundreds of calls come into dispatcher centers every day. Dispatchers are the first contact and usually not the last.
With more coronavirus cases being diagnosed across the country the CDC released several guidelines for emergency dispatch centers. “Have you traveled in the last 14 days??” said a dispatcher.
The CDC is asking 911 dispatchers to question callers and determine if there are concerns a person may have symptoms or QUOTE risk factors of COVID-19.
“The dispatchers will notify the first responders by letting them know they’ve (callers) have answered these questions and we suspect they’re covid-19 patient.
"It goes on to the CAD screen which goes out to all the first responders that are responding to the call so that they know as well,” said Manatee County Public Safety Director Jacob Saur.
If there is suspicion then first responders will know to respond with the proper gear and uniform. “They’re giving us the address of suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients are,” said Saur.
He says this helps protect everyone involved an extra layer.
He says because of this new questioning system they were able to warn first responders of a potential COVID-19 case this past weekend.
The person was then taken to the hospital.
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