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Texas Trauma Council Unveils New ECG Technology

The Southwest Texas Regional Advisory Council for Trauma (STRAC) on Monday unveiled LifeNet, a subscription service technology that transmits real-time ECG readings directly from emergency responders to physicians.

Details of the new service were announced during the Regional Cardiac System Summit, attended by representatives from area hospital systems, health care providers and EMS agencies.

LifeNet technology transmits ECG readings from patient to physician, reducing the likelihood of human error and maximizing the response and efficiency of medical providers at the health care/treatment facility.

"The integration of emergency health care delivery is essential to improving outcomes for our patients, said Craig Manifold, San Antonio Fire Department EMS medical director.

Using the LifeNet receiving station technology, "We will improve our accuracy rate of pre-hospital notification for heart attack patients. In turn, hospital emergency departments, catheterization team members and cardiologists can visualize the ECG reading in real-time and prepare to decrease the time it takes to remove a blockage from a coronary artery," he said.

Physicians will have the capability to monitor ECG activity through their smartphones with LifeNet.

According to Eric Epley, STRAC executive director, a live, standardized technology for regional EMS providers and hospitals will afford physicians and hospital response staff the opportunity to monitor and prepare to treat cardiac patients while they are being transported to the hospital.

"San Antonio and South Texas residents should be proud that we have healthcare systems that work collaboratively for the common good of critical cardiac patients. Because our area hospitals have agreed to utilize LifeNet, all regional EMS agencies can now use the system in the field and during patient transport," Epley said.

The regional deployment of LifeNet is being made possible thanks to a $197,600 grant provided by Methodist Healthcare Ministries. The grant funds the equipment used by the emergency responders in the field.

"We are very pleased to have been a part of the effort to provide our emergency responders with such a critical tool, and we are confident it will prove to be a tremendous benefit to the community. Methodist Healthcare Ministries is led by our mission to improve the physical, mental and spiritual health of those least served, and we feel the funding provided to the STRAC helps us to achieve that mission by enhancing the quality of care patients will receive, and as a result, improving their outcomes," said Kevin C. Moriarty, Methodist Healthcare Ministries president/CEO.



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