Dubuque Emergency Responders: Smart911 Saves Time, Maybe Lives


smart911 site screenshotDubuque County emergency responders say an enhanced 911 service is helping save valuable time and maybe even lives.

Smart 911 launched in Dubuque County in December. The free, optional service allows county residents to submit personal information, such as their medical history, to a third party website. The personal information will then pop-up on a dispatcher's computer during a 911 call.

Dubuque County residents can establish profiles that include information such as how many people live at a residence, if there are any pets and medical history. Each user determines what and how much information to submit to Smart 911. The information is only accessible on the Smart 911 to responders during a 911 call and for 45 minutes after the 911 call.

"Every time we have some predetermined information, it always helps," said Dubuque EMS Supervisor, Wayne Dow.

Dow said the program has been especially helpful for medical calls.

"If we have a person who is a cardiac patient who has an internal defibrillator, we could have a pre-warning to it," said Dow.

County 911 Manager Mark Murphy said Dubuque County sees about 2-4 profiles a week for calls. Murphy said other areas around eastern Iowa have already expressed interest in adopting Smart 911.

He said Polk County, including Des Moines, will be adopting the program in just a couple of months.



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