Benefits of Unified Critical Communications: Emergency Medical Services

Unified Critical Communications (UCC) is beneficial to all industries, but each industry will utilize the advantages of multi-bearer networks in ways specific to their operating environment. Continuing on with the fourth lesson of the Introduction to Unified Critical Communications course, we explore the benefits a UCC strategy can bring to Ambulance and Emergency Medical Services (EMS). 

Unified Critical Communications for Emergency Medical Services

Ambulance and Emergency Medical Services (EMS) see their mission changing from transporting patients to hospitals to delivering more advanced medical care directly to the patient. In a race against time, faster response and more appropriate medical assistance lead to better patient outcomes.

The ‘Connected Clinician’ concept relies on a radical revision of traditional ambulance communications. It would enable mission-critical voice, video, data, and EMS applications to be accessed through smart technologies using any device, any bearer, at any time. UCC is perfect for making the Connected Clinician a reality.

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The Benefits of UCC for Emergency Medical Services

By combining, enhancing, and unifying technologies currently used in ambulances – radio, mobile data terminals, tablets, smartphones – UCC allows paramedics, who are already working under stress, to focus on ambulance patients rather than communications equipment.

  • UCC reduces the number of different devices needed in an ambulance and can create a uniform user interface and standardized actions to operate them.
  • WiFi inside the ambulance can connect multiple devices, including the comms devices of ambulance personnel, as well as enabling simplified asset tracking and management.
  • LTE broadband access supports faster GPS/AVL services, enabling traffic condition and weather report updates, ensuring that ambulances get to the nearest medical center by the best route.
  • Broadband access can also deliver medical telemetry data in real-time to the medical center, so supporting specialists have access to vital medical data straight away.

The Future of Critical Communications for EMS

UCC allows Ambulances to become a key component in a coordinated first response by acting as a communications hub hosting a multi-network terminal, a WiFi mobile hotspot, with a local processing capability to support advanced mobile services such as stroke scanning and diagnostics.

If an ambulance and highly trained paramedics can perform medical interventions that are normally carried out in an emergency department, then some of the load of over-stretched hospital services can be assumed by ambulance services instead.

UCC can support both existing systems and future EMS possibilities that technologies such as 5G open up. Find out more in the complete course on the Tait Radio Academy.

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