Triage Training

Arizona Triage System

Successful scene management of a mass casualty incident (MCI) occurs in a standardized, predicable fashion. The procedures, tactical objectives and operational approach must be consistent across various Emergency Medical Service (EMS) agencies to ensure maximum effectiveness and optimum patient outcome when operating at major medical incidents.
The goal of the Mass Casualty Incident Program is to increase first responder readiness to respond, triage, treat and transport patients arising from a multiple patient or mass casualty incident using the Arizona Triage System.

This triage tagging system was developed after fire departments and EMS agencies in Central Arizona conducted an 18-month study to assess the effectiveness of commercial triage tags. It is now used throughout Arizona and in many jurisdictions across the United States. There are a variety of reference materials listed below which can be downloaded to assist you in preparing and teaching triage to your first responders.


Top Notch Triage
"Top Notch Triage," Dean Pedrotti, J.E.M.S., May, 2000.
"Triage: A Comparison of Triage Tags in Common Use in the United States," by Dean Pedrotti, MBA, and Ronald Perry Ph.D., Prehospital Care Research Forum in May 1999.

Initial Triage Training
The purpose of the Initial Triage Training curriculum is to introduce students to the Arizona Triage System using a triage method called S.T.A.R.T.-- Simple Triage and Rapid Treatment. Students can also practice the START technique using disaster mannequins at a simulated multi-patient incident. This curriculum includes a lesson plan, written exercises, review questions and student evaluations. A corresponding Triage Training slide presentation is available by clicking HERE. 

Advanced MCI Training
The second curriculum, Advanced MCI Training, is a planning tool that helps EMS agencies prepare and execute small or large multi-agency MCI exercises. It first provides students with a brief triage review and gives company officers and incident commanders an overview of EMS command responsibilities (used by Phoenix Fire Department) during an MCI. This lesson plan includes sample scenarios, sector checklists, incident critique forms and participant evaluation forms and is available HERE.