How to Ease the Work of an Emergency Responder / First Responder?

AllsWell Team


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Any life-or-death situation requires immediate intervention from a qualified and skilled professional. That’s when first responders – emergency medical responders (EMRs), paramedics, police officers, or firefighters – come into play. These trained and certified professionals provide immediate aid in emergencies leading to imminent health risks and life-threatening conditions.

And like with any such critical roles, it’s frequently a demanding rush against the time, so anything that could ease the burden of first responders – or even better, prevent the need for their intervention – is of great use. Today, we’ll discuss some helpful practices and tools to assist EMRs with their duties.

Who Are Emergency Responders / First Responders?

The term ‘emergency responder’ or ‘first responder’ defines an accredited professional  whose duty is to be among the first people to respond to an emergency, be it a crime, car accident, medical emergency, or terrorist attack. 

Apart from paramedics or emergency medical technicians (EMTs), first responders usually aren’t part of the national emergency medical service system. That said, they are qualified to cope with health emergencies as a part of professional or public safety.

The Difference Between Emergency Responders / First Responders and Emergency Medical Responders

Emergency responders is a general term encompassing police, fire, and emergency health personnel. Emergency medical responders, in particular, are trained according to the EMR program provided by the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians, with certification for four main categories of professionals: emergency medical responders (EMRs), emergency medical technicians (EMTs), advanced emergency medical technicians (AEMTs) and paramedics. Certification categories are based on the number of hours spent on training and the complexity of skills obtained. 

On average, emergency medical responders perform the following:

1. Advanced First Aid

EMRs are trained to recognize specific afflictions and provide complex medical interventions. For instance, they can handle heat exhaustion and frostbite of various degrees. Generally speaking, EMRs stabilize patients' condition and prepare them for transportation by the EMS unit. In certain circumstances, EMRs can also take on transportation.

2. Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation

First responder masters CPR techniques to sustain essential bodily processes: breathing, brain functioning, and blood circulation. In their professional training, responders learn CPR techniques using bag valve masks and emergency tracheotomy kits.

3. Use of Specialized First Aid Equipment

Emergency medical services (EMS) certification courses educate medical professionals on using complex tools like:

- automated external defibrillators;

- pharmacological intervention tools (intravenous infusion kits, auto-injectors);

- splinting equipment;

- tools for lifting and transporting patients.

Areas of Service

Our overview of the most dangerous jobs shows that lethality and injury rates are the highest among field workers. Since there’s no way they can get a comprehensive EMS response at the site, an emergency medical responder (EMR) should be nearby to provide advanced first aid. 

One of the priorities of the first responder is to reduce response time for emergency calls. That’s why people with different specializations, like police officers, firefighters, or even caregivers, might take on the responsibilities of an emergency responder when adequately trained and certified.

Here are examples of trained professionals who frequently come to the rescue at a workplace, public area, or residential neighborhood.

At a Workplace

Workplace managers typically rely on corporate security officers when a personal emergency occurs. Alternatively, outsourcing security services can ensure personnel’s workplace safety, too. 

Some employees undergo specialized training, after which they can join the Medical Emergency Response Teams (MERT). In addition to the on-site medical aid, MERT members can extract injured people from disaster zones without risks. 

In Public Places

A personal emergency might happen amid a crowded street, on a remote hiking trail, or even at the public pool. Pool lifeguards, park rangers, and university security guards with relevant medical skills and certification ensure the safety of a particular area or destination, ready to provide first aid if required. 

At Homes

Since 1993, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has implemented a national program for Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT). It includes training in:

  • Disaster awareness

  • Fire safety tactics

  • Elementary search and rescue skills 

  • First aid interventions

Upon completion of the course, the graduates gain basic knowledge of responding to home safety hazards and can provide emergency aid to their neighbors.

How to Ease the Work of an Emergency Responder / First Responder

Here are some practical ways to improve emergency management efficiency. These enhance collective awareness of safety risks and help to develop good cooperation between the public and EMRs.

Develop a Specialized Emergency Plan for the Workplace

A well-structured emergency plan would ensure the best outcome for EMRs’ response. Good planning starts with:

  • Risk assessment. Businesses can check recommended practices for safety management from Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). 

  • Awareness and preparedness. Administrators should adhere to OSHA guidelines regarding emergency preparedness. Those comply with regulations and standards for general industry and specific fields of work.

  • Team response training. Ensuring repetitive emergency response training for employees is vital so they leave dangerous areas promptly with fewer risks of getting harmed. 

  • Task Splitting. Heads of departments should designate the role of trained responders in specific emergency scenarios. For instance, the EMR can administer a restricted area to arrive at the emergency call faster.

On top of that, workplace safety supervisors and EMRs could start using reliable idle time detection solutions for safety monitoring. 

Strengthening Safety at a Public Place

Here are a couple of ways to improve the first responders’ efficiency in case of a personal emergency in public.

1. Ensure Access to Emergency Warning Devices 

Response centers use centralized communication systems to enable first responders on duty to accurately locate the emergency, even in case of a silent alarm. For this purpose, there should be reliable and accessible stationary alert buttons and intercom systems. 

2) Inspect First Aid Kits and Protective Equipment

Implement preventive measures to guarantee visitors' safety, double-check medical supplies and protective equipment, and make sure these are easily accessible. 

3) Update public safety instructions

Update visitors on any changes in evacuation or emergency reporting procedures. Ensure that information boards and visitor safety booklets contain recent updates.

Ensure Home Safety in Neighborhoods

If you monitor the safety of household members as a community first responder or certified caregiver, staying connected with them 24/7 is vital. Try implementing the following health monitoring devices.

1) Personal Emergency Response Systems (PERS)

These are wearable compact devices with an emergency SOS button. When somebody pushes the button, they send an SOS signal to a monitoring center or an emergency contact, depending on the device type and settings.

2) Monitored Medical Alert Systems (MMAS)

MMAS enhances the functionality of PERS. A remotely monitored base station transmits emergency signals from a variety of sensors. These might be wearable fall detectors, ECG trackers, or even in-doors smoke detectors.

3) Personal safety app

Many MMAS are stationary devices that best track stay-at-home seniors' well-being. A mobile solution downloaded to the smartphone might be a better choice for people on the go. Contemporary safety apps like AllsWell Alert support:

  • Real-time GPS tracking and location history.

  • Inactivity time detection for cases when a person loses consciousness and cannot actively send an SOS signal.

  • Person-to-person SOS notifications with geotags.

Moreover, a mobile app subscription usually costs four or five times less than the MMAS and doesn't require additional help with installation. 

Use AllsWell Alert App for Emergency Notifications and Safety Monitoring

With the AllsWell Alert app, you can stay on guard for people’s safety and well-being 24/7It  simple and unobtrusive monitoring of those under your care.

The safety monitoring application offers:

  • SOS alert notifications with precise geo-location

  • Smart inactivity tracking feature for silent alarms

  • Battery-saving background GPS tracking

  • Simple editing of emergency contacts.

On top of that, customers can try before they buy. Newly signed-up users can join AllsWell Alert for a free one-month trial with full access to its features. Visit AppStore or Google Play to download the app right away!

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