ALPHARETTA, Ga. – Alpharetta’s emergency 911 center is now one of the few centers in the nation to be recognized as an “Accredited Center of Excellence.” This is the highest professional accreditation award an emergency dispatch center can receive. Only 2 percent of the 911 emergency dispatch centers in the world receive this award.
Alpharetta handles over 65,000 calls a year.
“Our 911 communications officers are the initial critical link in getting help to someone in time of need,” said Alpharetta Councilman and Public Safety Liaison D.C. Aiken. “When that phone rings, they have to calm and support the caller in order to get critical information, identify the resources needed, assign those resources and advise our emergency responders on what to expect when they arrive on scene. It is probably the toughest job in public safety, and this recognition proves that our folks do it better than 98 percent of those in their profession.”
As part of the accreditation process, Alpharetta established compliance standards and exceeded dozens of operational standards mandated by the National Academies of Emergency Dispatch. Additionally, staff was required to meet or obtain very high compliance scores for handling emergency calls correctly. The accreditation process required an evaluation of emergency calls over a six-month period.
Hundreds of emergency calls were reviewed for accuracy by the national academy assessor. The Alpharetta dispatch staff was evaluated by the academy on the accuracy of information obtained from a caller, the accuracy of information put into the emergency dispatch system, the appropriate dispatch of equipment and personnel and the adherence to protocols while giving emergency medical advice over the phone – such as CPR instructions.