3 Essential Communication Tips in EMS

Updated on August 28, 2023
3 Essential Communication Tips in EMS

As an emergency medical services (EMS) professional, you enter and assess a chaotic situation quickly, determining the next steps to address health crises without delay. So much depends on how accurately you communicate, both with the patient and the hospital. For those looking for broad communication tips in EMS, read on.

Exude Confidence and Calm With Patients

When arriving, your first responsibility is to determine what’s wrong with the patient. This is your first chance to build a case for what treatment they need. Apart from this main purpose, you have another important job—calming the distressed patient. While some individuals may not be in a ready state of mind, many are conscious and looking to you to tell them what’s wrong exactly.

For these patients, your body language and tone are incredibly important. If you unnecessarily tense up (perhaps even recoil), the person may decide they’re in bad condition. Whether this is true or not, a patient’s strong reaction may complicate their treatment. It’s better to keep a straight face and speak clearly, warmly, and confidently. Restrict what you say—you shouldn’t avoid their frantic questions, but responding truthfully isn’t helpful in certain situations.

Communicate Clearly and Comprehensively With Medical Personnel

The other side of communication is with the medical staff into whose hands you commit these patients. Here are some additional communication tips for EMS workers like yourself that make planning and administering treatment easier.

Use Technology

Technological advances allow you to communicate pertinent case details quickly and with ease. Two-way radios, for one, help you coordinate with others who aren’t on the scene. Before delivering the patient to the hospital, you can use a radio to articulate the patient’s condition to an emergency department (ED) nurse. There are several tips for maximizing these radio communications that you can implement to get your entire message across effectively.

Fill in All Necessary Details

When communicating patient information via radio or other means, it’s absolutely necessary to give a complete, succinct rundown of relevant information. Ensuring you don’t neglect information keeps the stream of information accurate, so medical professionals can feel as if they were there on the scene with you before they even see the patient.

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