Boca Raton Uses Blue Tooth to Send EKGs


 
 

Jerome Burdi | | Sunday, April 13, 2008


BOCA RATON, Fla. -- Speed is strength when it comes to rescuing a heart attack victim.

Boca Raton Fire-Rescue paramedics have added some power to their rescue regimen this year with the Bluetooth cell phone device stuck to their ears. The medics use a Bluetooth to transmit electrocardiograms while en route to Boca Raton Community Hospital, cutting several minutes before a patient receives treatment.

"In our profession, time is muscle when we're dealing with the heart," fire-rescue spokesman Frank Correggio said.

Paramedics in the nine rescue units now instantly transmit the heart readings to a doctor.

Boca Raton Fire-Rescue has been using the system since January.

The technology works as a fax to the doctor waiting at the hospital, who then reads the EKG and decides whether to activate the cardiac catheterization lab's staff and machines. Though the hospital still does its own EKG when the patient arrives, several minutes are saved with the new technology, said Dr. Terry Cohen, medical director of the emergency department at the hospital.

"In the past, we'd wait until we saw what they had, to assess whether their call was accurate," Cohen said. "There are logistical reasons why you just don't call a fire alarm every time you see smoke."

The standard time for treating heart patients is 90 minutes from the time they get to the hospital to the time their arteries are being unclogged, Cohen said.

"The sooner we can open up those arteries, the less chance the portion of that heart muscle is going to die," fire-rescue EMS division Chief Bob Nelligan said.

Delray Beachand Boynton Beach fire-rescue use radios to give the hospital EKG results but are looking at technological upgrades such as the Bluetooth method.

"The sooner you can communicate that information to a waiting physician, the better off you are," Boynton Beach Fire-Rescue spokesman Steve Lewis said. "What this new technology will do is allow them to read what is on our monitor."

County Fire-Rescue spokesman Capt. Don DeLucia said his agency's Jupiter units will soon start transmitting EKGs over cell phones in a pilot program at Palm Beach Gardens Community Hospital.

Jerome Burdi can be reached at jjburdi@sun-sentinel.com or 561-243-6531.


Connect: Have a thought or feedback about this? Add your comment now
Related Topics: Cardiac and Circulation, Patient Management

What's Your Take? Comment Now ...

Buyer's Guide Featured Companies

Featured Careers & Jobs in EMS

Get JEMS in Your Inbox

 

Fire EMS Blogs


Blogger Browser

Today's Featured Posts

 

EMS Airway Clinic

Mechanical CPR is Producing Resuscitation Results Beyond Expectations

Discover why clinical studies are finding mechanical CPR just as effective as optimally-performed CPR.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

New York First Responders Take Extraordinary Steps to Help Residents

Snow causes fire and EMS crews to go beyond call of duty.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Raw Video: Explosion and Fire at California Business

Over a dozen hurt in Santa Paula blaze.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Four Workers Killed at Texas Chemical Plant

Five employees exposed to methyl mercaptan in La Porte.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Worker Killed in North Carolina Bridge Collapse

A fatal construction site collapse occurred in Wake County.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Plane Crashes into Chicago Home

Pilot reported engine trouble after takeoff.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Switzerland Landslide Kills Two, Injures Four

Slide hits residential building near Lugano.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

World Trade Center Rescue

Technical rescue work is done at nation’s tallest skyscraper.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Braun Ambulances' EZ Door Forward

Helps to create a safer ambulance module.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

The AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher Conversion Kit - EMS Today 2013

AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher all-hazards preparedness & response tool
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

VividTrac offered by Vivid Medical - EMS Today 2013

VividTrac, affordable high performance video intubation device.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Field Bridge Xpress ePCR on iPad, Android, Kindle Fire

Sneak peek of customizable run forms & more.
Watch It >


More Product Videos >