Interaction between the caller and the operator at the EMCC (Emergency Medical Communication Centre, 113) is crucial in emergency situations. Most people know that they can call the EMCC, but not everybody is aware that they can receive guidance and assistance regarding what can be done while help is on the way, for example initiating CPR (1). The role of the EMCC is to provide reassurance to the population in the knowledge that it is always available to help. Its motto, ‘Call 113 – and you are no longer alone’, expresses the same idea. Knowledge of the medical emergency number 113 must be incorporated into all training in first aid, including the way in which the EMCC takes charge and instructs all callers. Participants in first aid training courses should practise how to save lives in collaboration with the EMCC.
The population is an especially crucial actor in the medical emergency chain
Since the EMCC operator is the professional partner in the first-aid team, the operators need to receive more training in the role of team leader. A national standard for basic and maintenance training of EMCC operators ought to be developed (13).
Publicly available defibrillators have become visible to the EMCC with the aid of registration at the www.113.no website, and the authorities are currently seeking to establish automatic positioning of callers on a map in the EMCC.
To provide better help to time-critical incidents, it is crucial to have quality registries of relevant conditions, such as the Norwegian Cardiac Arrest Registry, the Norwegian Myocardial Infarction Registry, the Norwegian Stroke Registry and the Norwegian National Trauma Registry These registries should collect data on the early identification and treatment of patients. Measures initiated by both the caller and the EMCC should be systematically evaluated with a view to improving the training of the general public as well as that of the EMCC operators.