FAQ35: Should I contact my local "911" dispatcher after surgery?
by "Dutch" Helms
After reading several suggestions about contacting the local "911" dispatcher regarding my "condition" as a laryngectomee, I finally got off my butt and decided to do so. I felt this especially important, given that I, like many of you, live alone. I thought sharing the results of this experience might be of some assistance to many of you.
First, since I was not really SURE where my local "911" dispatcher was, I called "911" to get the correct office address. I then drove over and popped in for a visit. They could not have been nicer! I explained my "problem" (being a laryngectomee and a "neck-breather") and asked THEM what information THEY would like to have on hand should I ever call them and be unable to speak. They happily provided me with a short list with which I returned home to complete. The following day I returned to their office with the information which they promptly added to their computer system AND to a back-up Rolodex system. They asked me to go back home, wait an hour or so, and then call them to "test" them ... so that I would know that the "system" was up and running as it should be. I did this and, predictably, it worked just fine.
So, now, if I call "911" and am unable to speak, the dispatcher now has immediate access to the following information on me: