Milwaukee County 911 dispatchers screening calls for possible coronavirus symptoms
MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Milwaukee County 911 dispatchers are planning ahead for possible coronavirus cases in southeastern Wisconsin.
Dispatchers are now screening every call for possible symptoms of COVID-19. That includes anyone with symptoms of a fever, cough or shortness of breath and anyone who has recently traveled to an impacted area or been exposed to an infected person.
Leaders at the Office of Emergency Management said the screening started last week and will continue to be rolled out this week. They said it is important for both the patient and first responders.
“It’s really threefold actually. One is telling the patient how to protect themselves, isolate themselves, if they have a mask, put their mask on," Milwaukee County Office of Emergency Management Medical Director Dr. Ben Weston said. "Number two is of course protecting our providers and the health of our 911 EMS providers. Number three is really protecting the integrity of our system. If we have providers that are going in and now need to be potentially quarantined, that really diminishes the integrity of our system to respond to patient needs county-wide."
Weston said the screenings will not slow down response time or any other 911 services.