The time it takes responders to collect information at the scene of an emergency could be decreasing with the help of new smart phone applications.
When arriving on the scene of an emergency, an EMS team's first concern is patient safety.
"It's usually off to patient treatment, try and assess what's wrong with them and treat any life threatening injuries and transport them immediately," Grand Island Fire Department EMS Division Chief Russ Blackburn says.
But if they don't have access to specific medical history and allergy information, that process can take extra time.
Blackburn says the only way they can get that information is if the patient is conscious enough to talk to responders.
But it could be getting a bit easier. Emergency responders could have access to vital health information much faster, with just the click of a button on a patient's smart phone.
"I think it would be pretty beneficial to have that information for the people who aren't able to give us their own history," Blackburn says.
iPhone ICE or "In Case of Emergency" is just one new smart phone application that officials say could change emergency management practices.
Others inform people of incoming dangerous weather and offer preparedness tips. Central District Health Department Emergency Response Coordinator Andrew Hills says those that offer weather information can be particularly beneficial.
"You can get storm watch, there's weather bug, which allows you real time doppler radar," Hills says.
Hills says he and other emergency officials just expect these types of applications to continue gaining popularity.
"That little phone we carry around can have so much power and potential," Hills says. "They're going to be more and more useful for emergencies."
Grand Island firefighters are already using applications that help with translation, treatment and medication details.