Tulane EMS is a fully licensed ground transport ambulance service. (See operation hours and service area map.) When you call, an ambulance will respond, with lights and sirens, along with two to four crew members. The crew may be comprised of a variety of positions, from EMT students to EMS Supervisors with several years of experience.
Additionally, Tulane EMS will activate the 911 system from New Orleans Fire Department and EMS. It is our goal that patients receive the highest quality of care and attention with the lowest response time. Often, that means working with the men and women of the municipal 911 system.
NOTE: This list is not all-inclusive. If in doubt, it is always better to call!
When you call, the Police Dispatcher will ask what your emergency is. Give the dispatcher the necessary information and answer any questions.
The dispatchers will ask you to provide:
IMPORTANT: Do NOT hang up until the dispatcher hangs up. They may have important instructions to relay to you.
After you hang up, return to the victim or wait at the stated location for university police to arrive. They will directly contact Tulane EMS and provide up-to-date and exact information on both the patient and the location.
After you call, the Police Dispatcher pages Tulane EMS. The crew is quickly assembled and responds based on the call location, their present location, and severity of the call. When the first crew member arrives on scene, they will quickly assess the severity of the patient's condition. Common questions asked of the patient are those to assess their level of orientation and alertness ("What is your name? Do you know where you are, what today is, and what happened?"). Others include checking for common symptoms of life threats, such as the presence of chest pain, shortness of breath, a fall or hit to the head.
If you are the patient or a bystander to a call, remain calm and let the crew work. Don't crowd the patient or the crew. If a crew member asks you to step back, please do so. Interfering with the work of an EMT while on a call is an offense punishable by law. Those who interfere may be arrested.
BE AWARE! Bystanders or witnesses can provide valuable information to the EMTs on scene. Try to remember exactly what happened. Some details you may think are minor can be very important. Try to recall:
Was the patient or victim noticeably ill, in pain, or sick?
Does the patient have any preexisting medical conditions or are they on any medications?
If the person had a seizure or convulsions, was the entire body shaking or just one part?
Did they fall or hit their head?
Make sure the patient has their identification, insurance cards, and other necessary personal information. This information is important for the hospital staff to be able to identify the patient and to know who to contact in case of emergency. Tulane EMS allows ONE person to accompany a patient to the hospital. In most cases, the passenger rides in the front of the ambulance, as the crew must tend to the patient in the back.
Tulane EMS does not allow anyone who has consumed drugs or alcohol to accompany a patient to the hospital. There are too many liabilities with allowing persons under the influence into an emergency vehicle.
If you are accompanying a friend, be prepared for a wait. Bring a book or some homework to occupy your time.