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Dane County 911 Dispatcher Recognized for Helping Deliver Baby

January 23, 2009
Joshua Wescott, 267-8823 or 669-5606
County Executive

A Dane County 911 dispatcher providing step-by-step medical direction offered by the county’s Priority Medical Dispatch training and software is being credited for the recent safe delivery of a premature baby to a mom and dad from the McFarland area, county officials announced today.

Brent and Kimberly Lodewyk called 911 on January 12th when Kimberly experienced imminent childbirth while the couple was driving to a Madison hospital. Dispatcher Nathan Waite took the Lodewyk’s call and coached Brent Lodewyk on what he needed to do to help baby Katarina before the ambulance and sheriff’s deputies got there. Given that Katarina was 12 weeks premature, this was a high risk delivery.

“The ability of our emergency dispatchers to actually assist callers in life-saving procedures through scripted pre-arrival instructions has been a wonderful addition to their scope of practice,” Dane County Medical Director Dr. Paul Stiegler said. “This has been evident not only in this case of safely delivering a premature baby in a car but also in cases of cardiac arrest where our dispatchers were instrumental in saving nine (9) victims of cardiac arrest in 2008. I applaud Nathan for both his excellence adherence to the protocol and his very supportive manner on the phone with the father who he helped deliver the baby.”

“This is just one of countless stories of the heroic work our well-trained and dedicated dispatchers do everyday,” Falk said. “From coaching bystanders over the phone on how to do CCR chest compressions to making sure people who may be having heart attacks get aspirin when minutes count, to in this case helping with the safe arrival of a little miracle, our dispatchers are important first responders.”

County officials presented Waite a commendation for his professionalism and care he offered in the Lodewyk’s 911 call.

Falk also noted a recently completed report of the 911 Center showed the Center handled over 640,000 calls in 2008 with 911 calls answered on average in 1.2 rings.

“When people need 911 the Dane County Public Safety Communications Center, communicators are going to answer their call quickly and use state of the art training and technology to help them.”

The Dane County Public Safety Communications Center is among only a few 911 Centers in the state that use the protocol-based Priority Medical Dispatch software that Waite utilized to help deliver the baby.

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