In case of emergency, remember... You can't help if you are hurt.
Be certain the scene of an accident is safe before you enter. Don't allow yourself or others to become victims.
Be aware of anything which could cause further injury. If possible, remove the source of danger:
- Fire: put out the fire
- Electricity: turn off or remove exposed sources of electricity
- Traffic: warn oncoming traffic
- Smoke, Water, or Poison Gas: remove patient from smoke, water, or poison gas.
Do not move patient unless necessary to save his or her life or to prevent further injury.
Webster EMS encourages you to learn the correct first aid/CPR procedures and techniques associated with the emergency situations identified in this document.
Call the Emergency Numbers (In Massachusetts, the emergency number is 9-1-1 for police, fire, and ambulance.)
Record and be familiar with emergency numbers you might need outside Massachusetts (when visiting friends, at the cottage or boat, etc...). Have the following information near the phone:
After dialing 911, be prepared to give the following information:
- which emergency service do you require: police, fire or ambulance?
- the address or location and main intersection
- the telephone number you are calling from
- the type of emergency
- your name.
Know when it's an emergency
Sometimes it is difficult to know whether your problem is serious or not. Here are just a few examples* of when you require emergency medical care - and you should call 911 or go to an emergency department.
- When you are experiencing pains or tightness in the chest
- When you have severe pain
- When you have shortness of breath
- When a person is choking or having difficulty breathing
- When you think you may have fractured or broken a bone, or have a wound that may need stitches
- When you have sudden, severe headaches, vision problems, sudden weakness, numbness and/or tingling in the face, arm or leg, trouble speaking, or dizziness
- If your child has diarrhea and vomiting and won't eat or drink
- When a baby under six month has a fever over 101°F
*If you have any doubts, call 911. The ambulance will take you to the appropriate emergency department.
- The ambulance can't help you if they can't find you
- Stay calm - give clear information
- Clear a path to the patient - move furniture, unlock doors
- If possible have someone meet the ambulance
- Be sure your house number is clearly visible from the street
- If you live in a house - turn on the outside lights at night
- If you live in an apartment - try to meet the ambulance at the lobby door and have the elevator ready.
- Do not move the patient, unless life is threatened.
What to do
Be prepared to answer the following questions related to the patient's condition:
In Webster, call the emergency number 911 for medical emergencies. Be sure to state your name, address of the emergency and phone number from where you are calling.
If the patient is coughing or can speak - do nothing.
If they cannot breath or speak to you, take action:
Heart Attack: The #1 Killer
Many heart attacks can be prevented, learn to reduce the risk:
- Quit smoking
- Exercise regularly
- Eat properly
- Reduce stress
- Have your blood pressure checked regularly
Symptoms - watch for these signs:
(A conscious heart attack patient can usually speak to you)
- Chest pain or pressure
- Shortness of breath
- Ashen skin colour
Remember, the first two hours are most important. Take positive action. Expect denial - be persistent in giving assistance. If the signals persist for two minutes or longer ... sit the person down, reassure him or her and send for an ambulance.
Evaluation is critical
If a spinal injury is suspected, shout into patient's ear for response. Do not shake.
If a spinal injury is not suspected, shake shoulders and shout in ear for response.
If there is no other response:
Look, listen, and feel for breathing.
If patient is not breathing, give mouth to mouth resuscitation (one breath every five seconds).
If patient is breathing, place him or her in the recovery position to prevent choking.