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COA: City needs to augment 911 services

The city fell short in providing emergency assistance to the public, the Commission on Audit’s recent audit report said.

Based on the said report, “there is only one ambulance assigned to each satellite office that limits the assistance or service they can provide to the community during emergencies.”

“In case of simultaneous incidents or requests for medical assistance, the responders could only attend either to the one who called first for help or the other caller who needs immediate medical care, and delayed action may cause the loss of life of the person/s,” COA noted.

It also mentioned that sometimes, the ambulance undergoes repair due to defects or damages during the conduct of their day-to-day operations.

In these instances, the satellite offices do not serve its purpose to provide immediate response to any emergency cases within the area.

“If this happened, the satellite office will request back-up from the main office to attend to the request of the person concerned, which will really contribute to delayed response,” it said.

The agency added that Central 911 satellite offices in Toril and Calinan have no visible label or signage.

“People who are new to the area and have no knowledge regarding the satellite stations may have difficulty locating the office, which may cause delay of the assistance they need,” it said.

The auditing body also noted that the Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) has only 11 units that receive calls, locate the site of emergency and solicit incident information and the location of the caller.

“The scarce resources also affect the operations of the Central 911 to respond immediately to legitimate reports such as dispatching the agency’s limited means like ambulance and manpower to areas where they are mostly needed,” it said.

The COA also said the K9 unit has only 22 dogs.

“Twelve of which are considered working dogs and 10 are composed of puppies and those that are due to retire because of age and deteriorating capability,” it said.

In their reply, the Central 911 said it will immediately setup the signage/s in Toril and Calinan satellite stations.

Also, additional headsets and computer units were provided to the PSAP unit during the last quarter of CY 2018.

There is also an on-going process for the procurement of two units special care high-roof ambulance and five units advance life support ambulance.

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