FEMA Think Tank

24/7 Field Triage Preparedness

The recognition & adoption of a standardized national illuminated color coded system for triaging MCI patients 24/7. Today different States & organizations use different triage cards and tapes for triaging patients. The one thing they all have in common is not the language or format of the triage cards but it is the color given to each priority. If a national color code standard is adopted then no State or Agency would have to change their triage cards but in cases of National Disasters when first responders from different States come together, red is always first, yellow is always second, green is always third and black (blue light) is always last, we all speak the same language, via the colors. The illuminated component to the triage system is to address the lack of one today. Today support personnel run around with flashlight shining the light on cards or pieces of tape in the dark or under adverse conditions to find the priority patients. Imagine a rolled over bus on the highway at night while it is snowing. Why, when there is a better way? Use lights for night time or adverse condition scenarios. A study has shown if you use lights in triage you reduce patient collection times by over 30% and reduce patient collection errors from 4 errors down to 1 error. Our citizen's should be confident that our first responders are properly equipped and prepared to handle situations to the best of their abilities 24/7. Let’s make the patients and the responders lives easier especially during night time or adverse condition scenarios. Seconds count! Be 24/7 field triage prepared.

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Idea No. 133