REMSA’s Nurse Health Line is an Accredited Center of Excellence staffed with specially-trained registered nurses (called nurse navigators) available 24 hours-per-day, 7 days-per-week to provide assessment, care recommendations and/or referral to the appropriate health care or community service.
REMSA’s registered nurses provide care using the Emergency Communications Nurse System (ECNS), which is comprised of more than 200 protocol-based algorithms:
The ECNS symptom-based protocols guide the nurse through a series of medical questions. After confirming there are no priority symptoms requiring emergent care and additional information about the caller is gathered, the appropriate ECNS protocol is selected and the nurse then conducts additional clinical assessments.
Based upon the caller’s answers, a recommended level of care is selected, including options such as: send ambulance now, seek immediate care at an emergency department, seek care at urgent care center/clinic, schedule appointment with primary care doctor or stay home with self-care instructions provided.
Our unique integrated locally-developed directory of community services allows the nurse to identify a recommended location of care and to assist the patient in gaining access to an array of available medical and community services closest to their home. These include: urgent care centers, primary care doctors, medical clinics, mental health services, community service agencies, public assistance programs and alternative means of transportation.
In cooperation with the community’s health care partners, this program will safely:
- Improve each patient’s satisfaction with their overall health care experience
- Reduce patient wait-times for non-emergency care and reduce patient out-of-pocket costs
- Referral to in-network care locations where patient’s insurance is accepted
Avoid an unnecessary emergency department visit or emergency ambulance transport when another location of care may be more appropriate for the patient’s needs
The Nurse Health Line’s evidence-based system is certified by the International Academy of Emergency Dispatch. REMSA’s program is unique in the following ways:
- Protocol-driven algorithms decrease liability compared to guideline-based systems.
- Registered nurses (licensed in both Nevada and California) with additional certifications in Emergency Medical Dispatch (EMD) and ECNS provide assessment and triage.
- More than 2,000 medical, mental health and community resources in Northern Nevada are included in the locally-developed directory of services used by the nurses.
- Geo-mapping identifies open locations of care that are closest to caller’s home and accept caller’s insurance.
- The Nurse Health Line has been promoted to the community at large, providing easy access for callers via a non-emergency number as an alternative to 9-1-1 for non-emergencies.
- Nurses are co-located and fully integrated with the 9-1-1 emergency medical dispatch system, which assures warm hand-off of callers transferred to 9-1-1 in Washoe County.
The Nurse Health Line has achieved Accredited Center of Excellence designation from the International Academy of Emergency Dispatch. REMSA is honored to be the first ECNS nurse triage center in the world to achieve this accreditation.
ECNS provides an effective and standardized clinical assessment and assignment of recommended level of care.