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Emergency services change procedures during health crisis

OGLESBY – The ongoing health crisis over Covid-19 has changed how many area departments respond to someone who may be ill, and the first thing you may notice if you call for emergency services is what questions the dispatcher may ask you.  JoEllen Fisher with Illinois Valley Regional Dispatch, or ValCom, says that there are number of inquiries they will make to determine what type of response they will provide.
“Mainly if they are running a fever, have a cough, having any difficulty breathing including shortness of breath or have traveled outside the country.”
She noted that these questions provide the emergency personnel in the field with enough information to reduce their chance of exposure.
Many area Fire Departments and Ambulance Services have adjusted how they respond to calls for people who are ill, including wearing extra protective gear and limiting the number of people who will make contact with each patient.

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