Who Are the People Behind 911?

  • First Responders are usually law enforcement officers and fire rescue crews who are first to arrive at the emergency scene. They assist emergency victims until EMS arrives, and are often trained as EMTs or paramedics.
  • Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) have various levels of training. Some EMTs assist with rescues, and perform basic emergency care. Other EMTs are emergency dispatch operators who send ambulances and emergency vehicles to the emergency scene.
  • Emergency Dispatch Operators answer emergency calls, obtain the who, what and where information and send help right away.
  • Paramedics have the highest level of pre-hospital training. They perform medical procedures at the scene of the emergency or in the ambulance on the way to the hospital. Using a radio to communicate, paramedics often get instructions from physicians.
  • Emergency Nurses are specially trained to help and treat emergency patients. They are the first contact at the emergency room; they meet the ambulance, get the patient's medical information and arrange for the doctor to see the patient.
  • Emergency Physicians are doctors who specialize in treating people who are seriously injured or who have become sick very suddenly, such as heart attack victims.