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Medical Emergencies

You should always call 911 for emergency medical assistance when it’s obvious that you or another person is in need of immediate medical care. You can call 911 immediately from any phone.

Call 911 right away if someone is experiencing:

  • Chest pain
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Severe blood loss or uncontrollable bleeding
  • Severe allergic reaction
  • Seizures
  • Head injury

Also, call 911 right away for other emergencies including fires, crimes in progress and car accidents (especially if someone is injured).

IMPORTANT: If you’re unsure whether it’s a true emergency, call 911 and let the call-taker determine whether you need emergency help.

How to Call 911

  1. Call 911 ASAP
  2. Be prepared to give your address or location. Look for street signs, buildings, or other landmarks if you don’t know where you are
  3. Have someone stay with the victim, if it’s safe
  4. If it’s unsafe, move to safety and await emergency personnel
  5. Don’t hang up until help arrives

Answer Questions. Follow Instructions. Don’t Hang Up.

When you call 911, be prepared to answer the call-taker’s questions, which may include: the location of the emergency (including the street address); the phone number you are calling from; and details about the emergency, such as a physical description of a person who may have committed a crime, a description of any fire that may be burning, or a description of injuries or symptoms being experienced by a person having a medical emergency. Remember, the calltaker’s questions are important to get the right kind of help to you quickly.

Be prepared to follow any instructions the call-taker gives you. Many 911 centers can tell you exactly what to do to help in an emergency until help arrives, such as providing step-by-step instructions to aid someone who is choking or needs first aid or CPR.

Do not hang up until the call-taker instructs you to.

Called 911 by Mistake?

If you or a child dials 911 by mistake, stay on the line to explain that there is no emergency. 911 dispatchers may still send emergency services until it can be confirmed that there is no emergency.

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