Disney World, the best place in the world to have a medical emergency?

2:54 PM, Jul 19, 2012   |    comments
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ORLANDO, Fla. (WKMG) - In terms of 911 response time, Disney World is arguably the best place in the world to have a medical emergency.

Reedy Creek Fire Department's emergency response team is anchored by a communications center that dispatches help to a caller on Disney property within 45 seconds of the incoming call.

That call-to-dispatch efficiency is enhanced with high-tech equipment that targets the location of the 911 caller.

Bo Jones, Reedy Creek's assistant chief of communications, says the caller is always assured that help is on the way.

"Based on the answers they give us, it steers the dispatcher into what instructions and what equipment may be needed," Jones said.

Disney marathon contestant Mike Hein says he owes his life to the fast reaction of Reedy Creek EMTs.

The Wichita CPA was in Orlando for the January 2011 Disney Half Marathon when he suddenly collapsed 10 miles into the race.

"I was running and at mile 10, just out of the blue, I dropped to the ground.  From what the paramedics tell me, in full cardiac arrest without someone there, I would have been a statistic," Hein said.

Local 6 was given exclusive access to the communications center to see the operation in action. Two-hundred fifteen men and women work in shifts in the field and in the communications center with impressive efficiency.

A call came in from a woman calling for help after a man passed out in the Disney Hollywood park while Local 6 was there. EMTs were dispatched just 32 seconds into the conversation.  (To be clear, the response time is different than arrival time.)

For instance, Local 6 tested the system from Disney Wilderness Lodge. The EMTs were on the way in about 45 seconds, but the average arrival time to that location is about 6 minutes.

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