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Ocala Releases COVID-19 Assessment Tool to Help Emergency Dispatch Centers, Callers

By OCALA FIRE RESCUE, Correspondent | June 15, 2020 | FLORIDA

Story No. 061520107

Ocala, FL, June 8, 2020 — To help ensure residents receive necessary care as quickly as possible in a time when health concerns are high and emergency medical resources are stretched, Ocala Police is launching the COVID-19 Assessment, Tracking & Triage (CATTTM) tool. Residents concerned about COVID symptoms can use the tool to determine if they are in a critical situation and need to call 911 immediately, or if another suggested community resource would be best suited to their condition.

Ocala Police Department felt it was vital to have a tool in the community that allows residents to assess they own symptoms while at the same time be educated on when to dial 911 for true emergencies.

CATT guides residents through a sequence of questions to determine whether their symptoms require assistance from an emergency medical dispatcher and for EMS personnel to intervene. If symptoms can be handled outside the EMS system, the patient is directed to specific Marion County resources for help. Unlike other assessment tools, CATT also screens for other underlying conditions and provides a range of directions and recommendations for the continuing care of the patient.

The Medical Director for Ocala Fire & Marion County Fire Departments, Dr. Frank Fraunfelter says, “We’re employing CATT to make sure our residents have access to the care they need when they need it during this unprecedented time. As residents use CATT to determine necessary care, we anticipate fewer 911 callers asking about COVID symptoms, which will allow our overwhelmed emergency communication centers to handle life-critical calls more quickly.

CATT was created specifically for the emergency medical services (EMS) environment and leverages the decades of experience and expertise of the International Academies of Emergency Dispatch, the worldwide EMS standard-setting organization, and their partners Priority Dispatch and Priority Solutions. These global experts on EMS triage have created CATT to work optimally in the EMS environment, working in conjunction with Corti, a state-of-the-art AI software company.

The City of Ocala’s CATT tool can be found online at https://www.ocalapd.com/i-want-to/covid-19-online-assessment-tool

This article is a direct street report from our correspondent and has not been edited by the 1st Responder newsroom.