Charlie Category

Status
Not open for further replies.

jeremytrent

Member
Joined
Mar 9, 2007
Messages
41
When you hear the EMS call to the hospital saying the have a 'charlie category' patient - what does that refer to?

I'm sure some of you know so I thought I'd ask.
 

af5rn

Member
Joined
Apr 4, 2008
Messages
1,061
Location
N. Tex / S. Fla
jeremytrent said:
When you hear the EMS call to the hospital saying the have a 'charlie category' patient - what does that refer to?

I'm sure some of you know so I thought I'd ask.
It is very definitely not a universal term. Must be local to your area. Where is that?
 

bpckty1

Member
Joined
Dec 15, 2000
Messages
957
There is a possibility that it is a form of EMD codes (Emergency Medical Dispatch).

If your local EMS has a web page, check there.
 

jeremytrent

Member
Joined
Mar 9, 2007
Messages
41
AF5RN...

I'm in Austin. I've heard them note other 'category' patients, but I can't remember any at this time. They will say something like.... "This is medic 12 coming to you with a CHARLIE CATEGORY patient.....blah blah blah.....

Other times they will use other way of saying things....

I'm just curious if it means a certain level of illness, like CHARLIE might refer to heart attack or critical, or maybe it means they are low level.... who knows.
 

n5ims

Member
Joined
Jul 25, 2004
Messages
3,723
Probably indicates a class "C" injury, using whatever criteria that agency happens to use. Often, class "A" are minor, non life threatening injuries or illnesses. Class "B" are serious, non life threatening injuries or illnesses. Class "C" are serious, life threatening injuries or illnesses.
 

texasemt13

CenTex DBA
Database Admin
Joined
Jun 6, 2007
Messages
2,373
Location
Hunter, TX
Definitely not a universal code...

Is this something you hear in Austin specifically? Is it only when transporting to a certain hospital? I have some friends at AEMS so I'll ask, and a friend who is an ER tech in S. Austin so I'll ask him also- this is a strange code though. I agree with n%ims though its more than likely a severity code.
 

af5rn

Member
Joined
Apr 4, 2008
Messages
1,061
Location
N. Tex / S. Fla
Agreed. If you are only hearing it during patient reports to the hospital, then it is something to do with the patient's condition. Most systems that utilise such codes use a "priority code" system, with priority-one being a patient with immediately life threatening and unstable condition, down through priority-5, being a routine inter-facility transfer of a stable, non-acute patient. Those codes, of course, have nothing to do with telling what the specific problem is, just how serious it is, so the hospital can decide what preparations must be made for the patient.

I would suspect that Austin-Travis County EMS, who is fond of doing their own thing completely different from the rest of the EMS world, just made up their own codes. They could be the same as the priority codes, or they may mean a specific type of illness. For example, category C may mean a cardiac problem, or it could just be the same thing as a priority 3 (c=3), which would be an emergency patient who is in no immediately threatening distress. I know some EMS systems up north utilise priority codes Alpha thrugh Echo, with Echo being the highest priority instead of the lowest, so that is also a possibility. It could go either direction.

Yeah, you can ask somebody at A/TC and find out the easy way. But it might be more fun to simply listen to a lot of those patient reports, compare the patient features, and come to your own conclusion first. Such detective work is the most fun part of the scanning hobby. One big clue -- even if you are not medically inclined -- would be whether or not you hear sirens in the background or not. If so, then Category Charlie is hot stuff. If not, then Category Charlie is low down on the priority list. Although, a heart attack, though serious, is still usually transported without sirens. Good luck.
 
Last edited:

vanillajedi

Member
Joined
Jul 29, 2006
Messages
44
Location
vanillajedi
Hey all,

I'm part of the Austin-Travis County EMS system as a volunteer and sometime paid EMT-B. Here is the "official" definition:

CHARLIE –A patient condition or circumstance that requires moderate acute treatment or stabilization and further evaluation. An example would be a patient with a moderate asthmatic exacerbation with a slightly decreased O2 saturation requiring nebulized beta agonists. MCI designation- “Yellow” / “Delayed”

If you interested in more info on the patient categories, its located on page B-2 of the appendix below.

http://www.atcomd.net/downloads/Main Book-All Providers_10.01.07.pdf

If your interested in the dispatch priority codes, I can also answer questions about that if your interested.

Hope this helps...
 
Last edited:

jeremytrent

Member
Joined
Mar 9, 2007
Messages
41
Patient Transport Condition Classification System
Patient transport condition classification is based on the magnitude of abnormal physiology or the potential
for clinical deterioration. Specific interventions are not the sole determinate of abnormal physiology.
ALPHA – A patient condition or circumstance that appears to require little or no medical evaluation or
treatment. An example would be a minor being transported to DCMC because no parental consent for
refusal is available. MCI designation- “Green” / “Minimal”
BRAVO –A patient condition or circumstance that requires minimal acute treatment or further evaluation.
An example would be a patient involved in a low speed MVC complaining of neck pain, and neurologically
intact. MCI designation- “Green” / “Minimal”
CHARLIE –A patient condition or circumstance that requires moderate acute treatment or stabilization and
further evaluation. An example would be a patient with a moderate asthmatic exacerbation with a slightly
decreased O2 saturation requiring nebulized beta agonists. MCI designation- “Yellow” / “Delayed”
DELTA –A patient condition or circumstance that requires immediate acute treatment and stabilization and
further evaluation. An example would be a hypotensive patient with ECG evidence of a STEMI. MCI designation-
“Red” / ”Immediate”
ECHO –A patient condition or circumstance that requires immediate resuscitation and life sustaining measures.
An example would be any patient with resuscitative efforts in progress. MCI designation- “Black” /
“Expectant”
Patient Transport Condition Classification System
AEROMEDICAL
ALS Provider
ILS Provider
BLS Provider - EMT
BLS Provider - ECA
EMD
 

Karen1160

Member
Joined
Jun 22, 2013
Messages
1
Thanks for this..

I was searching for this very question.I too,k am in Austin TX. Ya'll are fantastic!
 

garys

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jun 13, 2002
Messages
4,841
Location
Eastern MA
Actually it's related to the Clawson EMD system, developed by Dr. Jeff Clawson who is from Salt Lake City. If it's used in Canada it's because MPD sold the system to them.

You can really go wrong by following the Urgences Sante model!



Ah! So they are doing it the Canadian way!

You can rarely go wrong in EMS by following the Canadian example.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top