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Fire department-based pilot studies

King County EMS works to reduce inequities in access to health services and health outcomes, particularly for populations with limited English proficiency, older adults, and people experiencing homelessness, mental illnesses, and/or chemical dependencies, through their Vulnerable Populations Strategic Initiative (VPSI).

Select a study to learn more

This project piloted the use of a new referral pathway between select King County Mobile Integrated Healthcare (MIH) EMS programs and Crisis Connections' single portal referral service, OneCall, to connect clients with behavioral health needs to appropriate health and social resources.

  • Download the study
    This paper aims to address ways to optimize the delivery of text-to-9-1-1 for the deaf and hard of hearing population in King County, Washington, primarily with critical time-sensitive emergencies, such as cardiac arrest.
  • Study Design (2019)
    The REACH/EMS Pilot Study, undertaken in 2018, focuses on improving access to medical and social services for high-need patients who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.

  • REACH/EMS Pilot: Program Evaluation
    An assessment of the pilot outlines possible recommendations for future projects of this kind within King County.
  • Study Design (2016)
    Across the United States, high utilizing individuals (HUI) of emergency medical services (EMS) are calling 9-1-1 for non-emergent needs with increasing frequency. It is estimated that nationally 5% of emergency department (ED) patients account for 25% of all the visits, and 62% of all ED visits are for avoidable conditions.
  • Study Design (2015)
  • Program Evaluation (2017)
    The pilot project was implemented by the Shoreline Fire Department (FD) to test a method of connecting 9-1-1 callers who have mental illness or substance use disorder to health care resources.
  • Program Evaluation (2016)
    King County Emergency Medical Services Division has sponsored the enrollment of candidates into its EMT Training Program via a scholarship. The purpose of this process evaluation is to understand and describe how the program is meeting its objective to remove three barriers that could dissuade someone from pursing enrollment in an EMT training program and a career in EMS.
  • Study Design (2014)
    The overreaching goal of the VPSI is to conduct programmatic, scientific and population based evaluations to ensure that the interface between EMS and vulnerable populations leads to better outcomes for vulnerable adults by applying research evidence to practice. The initiative is focused on conducting needs assessments with EMS providers and local populations, identifying and implementing pilot interventions and evaluating the results.

  • Program Evaluation (2015)
    The EMS Vulnerable Adult Pilot Project is a coordinated effort to improve the identification and reporting of vulnerable adult abuse and neglect, to increase care coordination and communication among involved agencies, and to improve health outcomes of vulnerable adults in Seattle, King County.