December 20, 2018Policy Report

Case Study: Washington, DC

Washington, DC Pilots 911 Nurse Triage Line to Increase Quality of Care

Download the Case Study

Washington, DC’s Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department (DCFEMS) has one of the highest per capita rate of 911 calls for emergency medical services in the United States. Yet approximately one out of every four 911 calls are for situations that do not require Emergency Medical Services (EMS) care; instead, they require primary care or urgent care services. Historically, DCFEMS has provided all 911 callers who present medical needs with the same response – an EMS team visits the person and, in most cases, transports them to the nearest hospital for admission. However, the high demand for EMS services in the nation’s capital was resulting in an EMS ambulance shortage.