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Preparing for Emergencies:
clipboard It’s understandable for a person to be flustered and forgetful during an emergency or other stressful time. Most  people don’t take into consideration “emergency service” when building their homes, installing phone service,  unexpected financial demands and so on. But there are things you can do right now to assist you and the  responders if and when an event occurs and you will benefit from these preparations as well. The more organized  and prepared you are before an emergency, the better the response.

House Identifying your home is vital for first responders. When responders are paged for an emergency in the middle of the night, in the driving-pouring rain or blizzard like conditions, visibility will be really poor. Post your house number near the front entrance of your home (by the front door and above the garage door for example). The numbers should be visible from the road and have adequate lighting. Ensuring your house numbers can be clearly seen from the road makes identifying your location effortless and….it saves time!!!

Mailbox Often responders will use mailboxes to locate your home. If your mailbox is placed along the road, post large reflective house numbers on the front & sides of your mailbox. Doing so aids responders in the dark of night, and when visibility is very poor due to bad weather conditions.

Rx Place a copy of your current list of medications, doctor’s info & contact person(s) on your refrigerator and by your telephone. When responders arrive, simply give them your list. When you aren’t feeling well, you may not remember what medicines you take, when you take them, and the dosage. Having a pre-made, up-to-date list is very convenient for you and the responders, and….it saves time!!!

Dispatch Follow the dispatcher’s instructions.
They are certified in emergency medical procedures and can provide vital instructions to you before the ambulance arrive.
 
Fam Prevent any distractions for emergency responders. When responders arrive, they need to focus on you. Responders want to provide you with the best quality care. Friends & family members with you on scene will be worried and may even be emotional. Sometimes emotional family members can be distracting, which will take treatment time away from you. Ask for one person to stay with you and the others to go in a separate room while responders assess your situation.

Pets Do you have pets? Pets are very sensitive to emotions. Scary situations for you are just as scary for them. Gently reassure your pets that all is well. Secure your pets before help arrives. Make arrangements for pet care in the event you would need to be transported and admitted to the hospital.
     
LocationKnow your location! If you are traveling, know the mile marker, what township or borough you are in, the name of the building etc. Know the address! If we can’t find you, we can’t help you!

Palm Teach children how to call 911 and the appropriate use of 9·1·1: Make sure your child is physically able to reach at least one phone in your home. Teach your child what 9·1·1 is -- (not nine eleven). Teach them to call 911 for emergencies only, and how to dial 9·1·1. Tell your child it’s ok to trust the dispatcher, to answer questions truthfully and be sure to speak loud & clear into the phone. When calling 9·1·1, your child must know their name, parent’s names, phone number and their address. The address is important. They need to remain on the line until the dispatcher tells them to hang up. Crank calling 9·1·1 is punishable by law. If you dial 911 by accident, do not hang up! Explain to the dispatcher you dialed in error.

Keys If you have a lock box, entry code or if you are an elderly person living alone with advanced medical issues, please take a moment to fill out the Residential Emergency Response Notification Form. The form registers important information to assist emergency responders when entering or securing your home during an emergency. Submitting the form is completely voluntary. The information will be used between 9·1·1 & first responders only. To obtain a copy of the form, please Click Here.

check Language Barriers are among the many challenges first responders face every day. Centre County 911 offers a translation tool known as the I SPEAK CARD. The purpose of the I Speak Card is to reduce language barriers between callers and first responders by referring to pre-identified facts written on the card, such as preferred language. Eliminating language barriers in 911 calls can save lives and save time. The I Speak Card is to be presented to first responders upon their arrival aiding everyone involved at the scene by determining the language immediately, and hopefully connect to an interpreter faster. The I Speak Card, currently printed in Mandarin, Russian, Spanish and German languages, encompasses the English translation. We hope this card will enhance emergency services, and reduce hesitation often felt by people calling 911 when they have limited English. I Speak Cards are available below:

EMS Enroll for a membership with your local ambulance service. In an emergency, the last thing you want to worry about is the bill. Most insurance plans do not cover the full cost of ambulance service. If you are enrolled in ambulance service membership, whatever your insurance pays is generally what your ambulance service will accept as payment in full for emergency transport-- even if your insurance only pays a portion of the bill or denies the claim. Membership fees are reasonably priced, and will save you money in the event of emergency transport. In most instances, as a courtesy for you soon after the date of service, EMS will submit an invoice to your insurance carrier. If the insurance carriers mail the payment check directly to you (the insured patient instead of the EMS agency) you are responsible for forwarding the insurance check to your EMS service provider!

Membership plans vary per EMS agency. Contact your local ambulance service for more details:
Bellefonte EMS (bems.net); Centre Life Link (centrelifelink.com); Mountaintop Ambulance Service (814-339-7410);
Moshannon Valley EMS (814-342-3292 M-F 8:30a-4:30p); Penns Valley EMS (pennsvalleyems.com/membership);
Pleasant Gap EMS (814-359-2102), Port Matilda EMS (portmatildaems.com/membership);
Snow Shoe EMS (814-387-4499, leave message).

Check Some fire & EMS agencies are volunteer agencies. These agencies rely on the community for support. Every little bit helps. Your support purchases emergency supplies, repairs and purchase of equipment & apparatus used to respond in your critical time of need! 

SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL FIRE, POLICE and EMS AGENCIES
Through their sponsored events, donations & fund raisers!