Acadian Ambulance Service of Texas, LLC, has successfully completed the intensive 20-step process to reaccredit as an Accredited Center of Excellence (ACE). The communication center is the 196th emergency dispatch center in the world to attain International Academies of Emergency Dispatch® (IAED™) status as an ACE for its use of the Medical Priority Dispatch System™ (MPDS®). This distinction places it among the very highest performing emergency dispatch agencies on the planet.

ACE inspires agencies to perform superior, up-to-date public care and to employ efficient use of resources when handling all emergency call situations. An accreditation lasts three years. In order to achieve reaccreditation, agencies must meet or exceed the same standards required in the initial accreditation, which requires participation from everyone in the department. Because ACE agencies abide by these standards and have fulfilled these requirements, callers can have peace of mind knowing their needs will always be appropriately addressed and that they will receive the help they need.

This is Acadian Ambulance’s first ACE reaccreditation using the MPDS. It is the second emergency dispatch center in Austin to become an ACE.

Dispatcher Michael Henson, who spearheaded the agency’s ACE process, is thrilled with the accomplishment. Henson, who is also an in-house instructor and quality assurance specialist, said this success wouldn’t have come without the dedication and hard work of everyone at the center—from the top on down.

“The day we received the call that we were the 196th ACE worldwide was a proud and very relieving moment,” he said. “To be an ACE says that our employees are willing to put forth the effort and that they are willing to be held to a higher standard even when people aren’t looking. We do not have to be ACE accredited (with the IAED), but I think employees have a feeling of accomplishment when they look at the plaque on the wall and it says Accredited. Once everyone saw that ‘just fine’ wasn’t the right way and the patient care was actually impacted, the process became pretty clear.  The ACE road suddenly became a lot smoother.”

Just as it does for the initial accreditation, the Academy’s Board of Accreditation reviews the center’s application and documentation of the Twenty Points.

“There’s a tremendous amount of work that goes into reaccrediting as an ACE,” said IAED President Jerry Overton. “We’re certainly proud of Acadian Ambulance’s dedication to this process.”

There are more than 180 centers throughout the world that currently have the ACE distinction among the 3,000 centers worldwide using the fire, police, medical, and nurse triage protocols for safe and efficient response to the wide variety of emergency situations.

Henson said being an ACE agency isn’t only significant for him and his colleagues, but he said it should give the residents Acadian Ambulance serves peace of mind in knowing that when they call for emergency help, highly qualified professionals will give them the best care possible.

“Most people do not know we are an ACE center,” he said. “What it should mean though is that they are talking to the best of the best. They are talking to someone that has the knowledge and dedication to give their loved ones the absolute best care until responders arrive. I know that if I call 911 and that I knew an ACE EMD was on the other end, I was in good hands.”

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