The MONOC Control Center is a fully integrated dispatch center responsible for answering 9-1-1 calls for contracted municipalities, taking requests for basic life support (BLS) and advanced life support (ALS) emergencies from six counties, receiving MONOC MEDEVAC requests for both scene and inter-facility cases, as well as for arranging all of the company’s non-emergent BLS, specialty care transport (SCT), and mobility assistance vehicle (MAV) transports. We obtained our status as a 9-1-1 Public Safety Dispatch Point (PSDP) in August of 2005 and began our services with the City of Orange and now handle, on average, 9,000 9-1-1 emergency medical dispatch (EMD) calls a year. As an EMD agency, MONOC provides the 9-1-1 caller with medical instructions until an emergency unit arrives on scene.
The Control Center currently has a staff of fifty-nine, including two coordinators, seven supervisors, and fifty dispatchers and call-takers. The center is divided into non-emergent and emergent divisions which consist of fourteen separate positions. In the room at all times is a supervisor who oversees all activity.
For non-emergent services, MONOC instituted the position of scheduler, who is responsible for issuing the pick up times for transports and assigning the units cases. Thus allowing us to increase our efficiency, productivity and on-time performance. The Control Center always staffs a controller position, which is responsible for working with the scheduler and dispatching the transport units to their cases. The non-emergent call-takers answer phones, data-enter the transports, and coordinate the pick up time with the scheduler. The Control Center also receives requests for transports via fax or e-mail. Once received, one of the call-takers will enter the case into the CAD and arrange the pick up time with the sch
For emergency medical services, MONOC has emergent call-takers who receive ALS and BLS requests from other emergency agencies. The emergent call-takers data-enter the request and save it to dispatch within forty seconds. All emergent call-takers have received eighty hours of 9-1-1 training and are CPR certified. Forty-four out of our fifty employees have successfully completed this training and received their certificates in Emergency Communication Officer and Emergency Medical Dispatch. MONOC 9-1-1 operators have to control the caller and guide them through the medical crisis with the use of the NJ-EMD Guide Cards offering pre-arrival instructions to assist until help arrives and takes over. Two dispatching positions are
staffed; one for the North and one for the Central areas. It is the responsibility of these dispatchers to ensure the closest available and most appropriate unit is being dispatched to each assignment.
When a medevac request comes in, the communications specialist is required to flight follow “MONOC 1” (MONOC’s medevac) and ensure their safety during the flight. Currently there are fifteen employees trained in flight following. The natural progression within the Control Center is for a new employee to begin in a non-emergent role and slowly progress with additional training and experience into the role of dispatcher and communications specialist. The dispatchers and communications specialists are the most experienced personnel in the control center who have received extensive training in each of the disciplines.
The Control Center operates two 9-1-1 trunk lines, five emergency phone lines used for ALS and emergency BLS requests, and nine non-emergent phone lines used for setting up transports for our non-emergent BLS, SCT and MAV units. The Control Center utilizes Zetron touch screen technology which incorporates on-screen display of 9-1-1 ANI and ALI information, TTD/TTY capability, and instant playback feature which stores the previous ten calls from that console position. All of our resources are stored for speed dialing capability. All phone lines and radio channels are recorded through Stancil Playback, to which the on-duty supervisor has immediate access. The Control Center also utilizes RescueNet Dispatch (Right CAD) from ZOLL DATA. The Control Center is capable of tracking MONOC units, and others, through GPS in our CAD program. It is further capable of medevac flight following through our CAD, using Outer Link programs such as COMM TRACK and COMM TEXT. All MONOC call-takers and dispatchers wear headsets allowing for better audio and hands free operation while minimizing the overall ambient noise in the Control Center.
As part of its duties, the center maintains the diversion status of all member hospitals in both MONOC’s NJHEDSUP and the state’s JEMSTAT web-based computer programs. MONOC’s NJHEDSUP is far more extensive and user friendly than the state’s JEMSTAT program, and provides a richer level of detail and reporting capability, as well as accessibility through each member’s emergency department. It also provides for real time hospital status and allows for the monitoring of active mass-casualty incidents in which MONOC units are participating. NJHEDSUP is available at no cost to our member hospitals.
The Control Center is listed as a member of the Association of Public Safety Communications Officials (APCO) and National Emergency Number Association (NENA) and a local member of NJ-NENA. Currently, we are seeking membership into the National Association of Air Medical Communication Specialists (NAACS). We achieved our 9-1-1 certifications through the National Emergency Communications Institute (NECI) and Office of Emergency Telecommunication Services (OETS) and actively participate in the NJ Emergency Medical Services Communication Group. MONOC is the first, and still only agency in New Jersey to have attained accreditation by CAAS (the Commission of Accreditation of Ambulance Services), which reviews and evaluates dispatch operations as part of it's comprehensive assessment process.
The Control Center management conducts quarterly performance evaluations on all employees, evaluating the overall job performance for their current position to ensure they are following Control Center policies, MONOC policy, State and Federal regulations, and are fulfilling their current job description. If any employee is not at a satisfactory level they are given an action plan to correct their deficiencies.
The Control Center also performs random quality assurance checks on call intake for 911, emergency, and non-emergency cases to ensure policy is being followed and calls are being processed properly. This includes reviewing customer service practices to ensure they are meeting appropriate standards. Dispatching activity is also subject to daily quality assurance by the on duty supervisor who ensures each dispatcher remains attentive at all times and performing prompt and accurate dispatching of units. All of the Control Center employees are subject to the Company’s disciplinary procedure if it is found that an employee makes a critical error causing a delay in patient care or fails to follow Control Center or MONOC policies or Standard Operating Procedures. We utilize a variety of reports to measure call taking times and dispatch processing times to ensure they are within the required parameters. We are constantly reviewing and updating current policies and standard operating procedures with staff to ensure we are making the necessary adjustments to improve overall performance. Additionally, the Control Center continually keeps up to date with technology to make the employee’s job easier.
On any given day, we manage over 70 units in the system, answer approximately 500 requests for service and field an additional several hundred calls requiring some form of a response from the Control Center. On average, a single call-taker handles 60 to 70 calls a day and provides follow-up communication for both facilities and field units. The Control Center processed over 168,000 requests for service in 2007. MONOC is proud to be the largest, busiest and most technologically advanced EMS and medical transportation agency in the state of New Jersey.