10 Tips on how to act in medical emergencies and when you should call 911

How do you react in a medical emergency? Are you the first person to faint? Are you the one running around screaming and shouting out directions but doing little or nothing at all? Are you the one to get paralyzed at the sight of blood? Or are you that calm and practical individual that is the best person in an emergency?


As per Dr. Jayson Podber, MD in Stamford Hospital, Connecticut, the hospital is the best place for conditions such as pain in various areas of the body, stomach problems and headache. But if there is a case involving wounds and bruises, a ruptured ear drum and ear infections, its best to call 911. Here is a list of ten tips on how to act in medical emergencies.

1 When Should You Call 911?

You don’t really need to call 911 if your friend or father is having a sneezing or coughing fit. Diseases like viral fevers and stomach upsets require the care of a doctor or a hospital. 911 is meant for a life threatening emergency which is out of your hands. Ensure that your phone carries all emergency numbers. This thing is also advised by a paramedic, Laurie Martinka, working at Chilton Memorial Hospital in Pompton Plains, New Jersey.

When Should You Call 911?

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2 Assessing the Need of Urgent Care

The best place to acquire urgent care, diagnosis and treatment is a hospital. Should you have conditions such as a strep throat or a bad case of tonsillitis, head to a doctor or the outpatient department at a hospital. There are many urgent care day centers available where you can rush to, in the event of a sprain, or a cut that requires stitches. However make sure you go to an orthopedic urgent care facility which will have an x-ray department too.

911 Emergency

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3 Calm Down and Then React By Calling 911

Rushing around a room moaning, screeching and crying might make things worse for the affected person. Call 911 and then administer appropriate actions to the patient.


Among the tips to act in medical emergencies, CPR is important. If you know CPR then do it. Consult with your doctor if you can place a pillow under his head or should you apply a tourniquet in case of a wound. Comforting and calming a patient can also work wonders till emergency help arrives.

act in emergencies CPR is important

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4 Guidelines on Calling 911

Before dialing 911,switch on your location and GPS of your mobile to enable tracking by paramedics. Provide precise details on the shortest route of reaching you to speed up the process.

Guidelines on Calling 911

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5 Information You Need To Know

Always carry a list of important medical information on you. Data such as blood group, family doctor, allergies, as theses are vital bits of information required by those administering first aid. If you have diabetes or a major allergy like a peanut allergy then consider buying a mediband so people know exactly what to do or how to treat you. This will save valuable time.

carry a list of important medical information

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6 Never Try To Move An Accident Victim

Leave an accident victim alone unless he is lying in the middle of the road, then you have no option but to move him to a safer location. In this case do so gently and never try to bend any limbs as the patient may suffer from broken bones.

Never Try To Move An Accident Victim

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7 Be Careful When Treating Burns

Severe burns should be left alone till help arrives. Remember 3rd degree burns need help immediately so act fast and call 911. 1st degree burns can be treated with a painkiller such as ibuprofen and soaked in cool tap water after which you can apply a medicated cream for burns. In case of 2nd degree burns, apply a piece of clean wet cloth and use ibuprofen for pain. Do not apply any creams. DO NOT APPLY ITEMS LIKE TOMATO, SALAD OIL OR ANY OIL TO BURNS. You don’t want to start cooking the flesh now do you? Moreover always ensure its cool tap water, do not apply ice or put the affected area into the refrigerator.

Be Careful When Treating Burns

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8 Act Wisely In Case Of Wounds And Cuts

If you have information on first aid, well and good or else, use a clean towel to apply some pressure on the wound to arrest the bleeding. Do not go pouring water over the wound. As much as possible try to elevate the wounded area in an upright position. If it’s an arm that is cut, fold your arm using your biceps while allowing the dressing to remain in place. Then apply an additional bandage to hold the position. Only if it’s a serious emergency should you apply a tourniquet which can’t be held for too long. For serious injuries don’t hesitate and call 911 instantly.

Act Wisely In Case Of Wounds And Cuts

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9 Applying First Aid to Broken Bones

This may be a tricky situation but in case of a broken arm or leg, the area should be immobilized immediately and not allowed to move at all. Martinka advises the use of magazines, paperback books or pillows, if available, to be placed for support. Never try straightening a fracture and always move the patient into a comfortable position. Use items around you such as a slim wooden board to make a splint, covering a large section of the affected area. Rush the patient to a hospital immediately.

Applying First Aid to Broken Bones

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10 Inform The Ambulance Which Hospital To Go To

Not everything is about tips to act in medical emergencies; you have your medical insurance to think of too. If you’re covered under medical insurance then instruct the paramedics to take you to a hospital close by that will provide you cashless treatment under such schemes. However paramedics may do what they feel is best for the life of the patient.

Inform The Ambulance

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