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COVID-19 Calls are Overwhelming 911 Dispatch Centers

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The number of cases of COVID-19 continue to rise, shelter in place ordinances have rolled out, and in some cases have been extended. Living within a pandemic has left many with questions and few reliable sources for answers. Many individuals have turned to calling 911 for answers to their questions about shelter in place orders and Coronavirus related information. Police departments and emergency dispatchers have become inundated with the severe uptick in COVID-19 calls.

While there has been an increase in emergency calls to 911 there has also been an increase in non-emergency COVID-19 calls to 911 as well. Examples of such calls include; reports of non-essential business being unwilling to shut down, teachers wondering if they can drop off school work to students, and parents concerned they’ll be ticketed for traveling in order to abide by child custody orders. Many state and law enforcement officials have urged the public not to call 911 unless it’s a severe medical emergency.

911 centers are currently flooded with non-emergency COVID-19 calls making it difficult for dispatchers to quickly respond to the truly urgent emergency calls. In response to this crisis, organizations are utilizing internal safety tools, such as 911Cellular products, to route non-emergency COVID-19 calls away from 911 lines. Organizations utilizing the 911Cellular Mobile Safety App solution have the ability to direct and control the flow of where emergency calls are sent to. Doing so gives their internal safety forces the opportunity to address and handle safety issues instead of the call going to 911. Organizations that route non-emergency COVID-19 calls away from 911 lines will see quicker response times regarding true emergency calls.

Other tools such as 911Cellular’s Mass notification systems allow organizations to send their communities essential and timely COVID-19 information on a regular basis. Many organizations are sending messages about shelter in place ordinances, evolving best practices, and urging their communities to utilize alternatives to 911 if they have COVID-19 questions. Proactively providing community members with lifesaving COVID-19 information minimizes panic and reduces non-emergency related calls to safety forces. Sending information and resources directly to the phones and inboxes of users reduces their need to call 911 with non-emergency COVID-19 questions.

If you are interested in learning more about the 911Cellular solution and how it can assist your organization during the COVID-19 pandemic, please visit our website.

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