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Elaine Schneiker



BSc (Hons1st), GradDip. PH, Certified Practicing Speech Language Pathologist (CPSLP)

PhD Thesis

Communication factors and triage accuracy in emergency calls to ambulance services for suspected Stroke


The emergency call is the ‘first link in the chain of survival’ for patients with time-critical conditions, yet there is a lack of research on this link. My PhD will investigate how communication factors during emergency calls may impact the accuracy of triage in suspected stroke cases.

Why my research is important

If a patient’s condition and severity is underestimated during an emergency call they may miss out on the timely arrival of critical care; alternatively, if a patient’s condition and severity is overestimated, this means that fewer ambulances are available for other patients in greater need. Identifying and describing communication difficulties within an emergency call can assist in managing over- and under- triage. This information can potentially improve patient outcomes, training for Communications Officers, and overall system efficiency.