No two calls for an ambulance are ever exactly the same. That being said, the underlying reason for the call may be similar. Certain emergencies are more common than others and oftentimes elicit a call to emergency services. In today’s blog, we take a closer look at 10 of the most common reasons that people call for an ambulance.
What Are The Most Common Emergencies?
To get a better understanding of why people call emergency services, we’re going to look at data provided by the National Emergency Medical Services Information System, which is a national EMS database. So while this isn’t a specific look into the reasons why people end up needing a Gold Cross ambulance, a lot of the data mirrors our own. Here’s a closer look at the 10 most common reasons why people call emergency services.
1. Traumatic Injury – 21.4% – Sudden and severe injuries that develop as a result of acute force are classified as traumatic injuries. Things like a bike accident, car crash or a fall off a ladder can all lead to traumatic injuries, and these types of injuries account for roughly one in every five calls to emergency services.
2. Abdominal Pain 12.3% – Pain in the stomach area can be a cause for concern, and because it doesn’t always develop as a result of clear and obvious trauma to the area, it’s a common reason for someone to call emergency services. Gallbladder attacks, appendicitis or an abdominal obstruction are examples of reasons why someone may call for EMS as a result of abdominal pain.
3. Respiratory Distress – 12.2% – We need to breathe in order to live, so if someone is having difficulty breathing, it’s a smart idea to get EMS on the phone. From an asthma attack to an overdose causing impaired breathing, we’ve seen our fair share of respiratory emergencies.
4. Chest Pain – 10.1% – Chest pain is a common symptom associated with a heart attack, and because most people know how serious a heart attack can be, if they feel chest pain or tightness, they are often quick to call 911. Besides a heart attack, chest pain can be the result of a condition like pancreatitis or a panic/anxiety attack.
5. Behavioral Disorder 7.8% – If a person is acting erratically or nonsensically, sometimes the best move is to call emergency services. They could be dealing with a blood sugar issue caused by their diabetes, or they may not have taken medications that help them deal with a condition like schizophrenia or bipolar disorder.
6. Loss of Consciousness 7.7% – We also handle a lot of calls about someone who has lost consciousness or fainted. A number of different issues can cause someone to lose consciousness, from severe trauma to a blood pressure disorder. If someone has lost consciousness, it’s a good idea to get EMS on the phone.
7. Altered Level of Consciousness – 6.9% – An altered level of consciousness can sometimes be difficult to spot. The person may be conscious, but their speech or ability to focus may be altered. If someone is having difficulty responding to you, or their answers aren’t making any sense, they could be suffering from an issue like heat stroke or diabetic shock, and professional medical intervention is advised.
8. Seizure – 4.7% – A seizure involves the uncontrolled movement and shaking of the body, and it may involve variable levels of consciousness. They are brought on by excessive brain activity and can be categorized as provoked or unprovoked. Epilepsy affects more than three million Americans and is the leading cause of seizures in the US.
9. Poisoning or Drug Ingestion – 3.5% – Accidental poisoning and drug ingestion can happen when young children get their hands on things they don’t understand. In fact, roughly 80 percent of accidental poisonings and drug ingestion occurs in children between the ages of 1-3 years old. If you know or suspect that your child has ingested something that could make them sick, call poison control or EMS.
10. Diabetic Symptoms – 2.5% – Rounding out the list is calls for diabetic symptoms. Complications from diabetes can trigger other types of calls on this list, but if a person enters diabetic shock or is experiencing hypoglycemia or hyperglycemia, sometimes the best thing to do is call for an ambulance.
If you end up needing professional medical help for any of these reasons or for an incident not on the list, contact the team at Gold Cross Ambulance Services today.