SportsRadio 610 hosts had the opportunity to record playback messages, used for project ETHAN’s upgraded telemedicine program. These messages are heard in the event that an ETHAN physician who answers the call is busy or away from the desk. These pre-scripted messages are intended to make the playback messages a lot less boring for our HFD crews and callers. Many of our on air talent recorded their own versions of the playback messages which will now be used for all ETHAN calls.
The Houston Fire Department has implemented a new program called Project ETHAN, an acronym for Emergency TeleHealth and Navigation. ETHAN uses live video chat for some patients who call 911 for minor health problems. Patients can speak live with an emergency medicine doctor through a computer tablet, potentially avoiding a long and costly ER visit. The idea is to direct patients to primary care clinics, instead of just automatically bringing them to the emergency room, where ambulances can be tied up for precious minutes — even an hour — as EMTs do paperwork or wait for a nurse to admit the patient. By diverting some patients to clinics, ambulances can stay out in the neighborhoods, and overloaded emergency rooms can focus on urgent cases.