The OnStar Advantage

Last fall, OnStar celebrated 25 years of technology and experience in assisting with emergency incidents. Whether it is a car crash, a medical emergency or a stolen vehicle, OnStar’s many years of call-triage experience helps align its processes to support public safety. Currently, the 911 industry is experiencing unprecedented staffing shortages and workloads, but OnStar is uniquely positioned to assist with these challenges and lessen the burden. There are three distinct facets that form the OnStar advantage: Advisors, process and technology.


    More than 220 Emergency-Certified Advisors* provide a human connection for customers and public safety. OnStar Advisors go through extensive training on call triage to ensure efficient communications, which helps to avoid unnecessarily burdening the Emergency Communications Center (ECC). For example, calls are screened to determine whether other services such as Roadside Assistance, towing, routes to hospitals, and/or conferencing to the Poison Control hotline can be offered prior to engaging an ECC. This triage and validation process also alleviates unnecessary, accidental and errant requests that can overload ECCs. In fact, more than half of the emergency calls coming into OnStar are inadvertent. OnStar’s Advisors are also EMD-certified, and OnStar is recognized as an International Academies of Emergency Dispatch (IAED) Accredited Center of Excellence.


    In addition to its triage process, OnStar’s two-Advisor EMD process is designed to dedicate one Advisor to the patient(s) and the other to contacting and keeping the ECC updated on any changes that could impact the dispatch priority and resources. OnStar Advisors have the bandwidth to stay connected until help arrives to take over the scene, providing peace of mind for the patient and First Responders in the relay of important on-scene updates.


    Automatic Crash Response data such as air bag deployment, propulsion type, seated occupancy and Injury Severity Prediction (ISP) not only help ECC staff to determine the appropriate resources to dispatch to the scene, but also to the First Responders en route to prepare for the scene, patient needs and transport decisions to improve patient outcomes. Coupled with the ability to send real-time incident data and precise location information directly to ECCs via RapidDeploy’s Radius product, OnStar’s technology can decrease the time ECC personnel spend on calls.

    OnStar’s proprietary ECC database is another helpful technological tool supporting the OnStar advantage. Updates are routinely made to ensure emergency incidents are directed to the right ECC quickly.

With more than 15 million connected vehicles in the U.S. and Canada alone, the elements of the OnStar advantage are in place to assist public safety now more than ever.

*Emergency-Certified Advisors are certified by the International Academies of Emergency Dispatch.