How does accreditation address communications?

Efficient call taking, effective resource deployment, and continuous communications capabilities are required to operate an effective EMS agency. The CAAS-accredited agency must have policies developed and reviewed with input from the Medical Director. Policies include exacting call-taking standards which document time events from time of request through the time the vehicle and crew are returned to service. Crews must be able to communicate instantly with one another and with the dispatch center. All call-takers must be trained as emergency medical dispatchers capable of providing pre-arrival instructions. All radio licenses must be current and displayed. There must be a thoroughly documented system for testing and maintenance of equipment and back-up power. The communications program requires ongoing, inter-agency dialogue to facilitate improved relationships and service coordination, and the agency must evidence prospective, concurrent, and retrospective initiatives designed to improve the service provided under their CQI program.