DOHA 20th February: An emergency medical dispatcher at Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) has been awarded the Middle East Dispatcher of the Year Award from the US-based International Academies of Emergency Dispatch (IAED).
Mr. Mutaz Alrafayia, an emergency medical dispatcher at the Hamad Medical Corporation’s Ambulance Service, was presented with the honor at a special event in Dubai, United Arab Emirates recently.
The IAED is leading body of emergency dispatch experts. IAED protocols guide dispatchers in asking the right questions; provide better, more consistent, emergency dispatch service; and advance first-responder situational awareness.
Mr. Abdulaziz Alyafei Assistant Executive Director Communications at the HMC Ambulance Service said the Dispatcher of the Year Award is given annually to an emergency dispatcher who exemplifies excellence in his or her work throughout the year.
“We are very proud of Mutaz and his calm and professional approach is recognized by this accolade,” Mr. Alyafei said.
“The work that emergency medical dispatchers do in the control room is so important because it’s the vital, initial minutes when people make an emergency call that help save a life.
“There are other things that we do to help with survival and with providing a good quality emergency response and clinical care - speed, accuracy, multi-tasking, initiative, critical thinking skills and keen problem-solving skills are vital to be successful in this role. Unlike the work of paramedics and the Emergency Department, the work of the dispatcher often remains in the background.”
An emergency medical dispatcher role involves prioritizing and dispatching 999 calls for basic life support and advanced life support ambulances as well as communicating with other agencies. They provide vital information to paramedic teams and hospitals.
Criteria for the award included personal and professional conduct that reflects the highest standard of the Medical Priority dispatch protocols and consistently exhibits outstanding performance in controlling any situation where lives and/or property are in jeopardy.
Mr. Alrafayia has been with HMC for two years, having previously worked as a medical dispatcher in Abu Dhabi. After studying for his Bachelors’ degree in Paramedical Science, he became a medical dispatcher.
“We can handle up to 50 calls a day, sometimes up to 100 calls during a busy period,” he said of his work. “Every call is different and it’s important to be able to keep calm and to ensure the right people and resources arrive on scene.”
Mr. Alrafayia, who is Jordanian, said he feels immense satisfaction in his job, especially after having helped a patient.
“It can be very emotional, especially where children are involved,” he said. “But it’s an amazing feeling when you find out how you were able to help them, even in the most difficult of situations. Being recognized with this award for my work, something that I do every day, is very motivating.”