Equipment & Gear

A draft of legislation intended to create government oversight of medical alert services says providers should request emergency help immediately if a subscriber fails to respond to voice-to-voice communication or face hefty fines for injuries.The legislation comes about three months after Christine Talley, 69, of Danville, pressed her Phillips Lifeline medical alert button for help because she was having a heart attack.
Industry News

NEW YORK - Retiree Gene O'Brien hurried to the World Trade Center site after Sept. 11, 2001, as a volunteer helping to shuttle supplies to police and fire workers. Some days, his only ID to get into the disaster site was a tattoo on his forearm."A couple times I showed them my Marine tattoo, and they said go ahead," recalled O'Brien, adding that he and other volunteers also came up with their own makeshift identification cards.
Airway & Respiratory

Firefighters at Station 7 in Columbia rushed to the same nursing home three times during two recent 24-hour shifts. Only one of those 911 calls - for a patient in "respiratory distress" - was a true emergency, crew members said, but firefighters still took all three residents to a hospital by ambulance."Sometimes we're more of a transportation service [for these facilities] than an emergency service," paramedic firefighter Jeffrey King said.
Ambulances & Vehicle Ops

Sep. 2--An EMSA ambulance taking a 2-year-old girl to a Tulsa hospital after she nearly drowned was hit by another vehicle at an intersection, police said.Sgt. Ted Umbarger said paramedics and police responded about 2:30 p.m. to an apartment complex at 8024 E. Fourth Place, where the girl had apparently been under water for about three minutes.
Cardiac & Resuscitation

One had his nose broken four times. Another was attacked with cinder blocks dropped off the roof of a housing project. Others have been stabbed with drug-filled syringes, chased by dogs, and strafed by gunfire after arriving at crime scenes before the shooting stopped. Boston's emergency medical technicians, who often run red lights and speed through the opposite lane of traffic to save lives, are trained to confront broken bones and cardiac arrest.
Airway & Respiratory

The further seriously ill patients have to travel by ambulance to reach emergency care, the more likely they are to die, reveals research in Emergency Medicine Journal.People with respiratory problems seem to be at greatest risk, the study indicates.The findings have implications for the UK government's proposals to close local emergency care departments in favour of fewer more specialised centres, in a bid to save lives, say the authors.Local closures will inevitably spell longer ambulance journeys for critically ill patients, they say.
Administration and Leadership

Anyone involved with EMS in the U.S. for at least a decade no doubt remembers the push in the mid '90s to create ˙expanded-scope EMS.Ó Although that effort sputtered and appeared to have died, the concept of using EMS personnel as ˙community paramedicsÓ to provide primary care services when not responding to emergency calls lives on in Canada -- and is about to make a comeback in the U.S.„
Industry News

A bipartisan group of 101 senators and representatives sent President Bush a letter that expressed their concern over the slow implementation of the Hometown Heroes Survivor Benefits Act.In 2004, the act was passed to allow families of public safety officers who died from heart attacks or strokes within 24 hours of participating in an emergency response situation to receive public safety officer benefits (PSOB). To date, more than 250 applications have been received, and fewer than 10 claims have been approved. At least 40 claims have been denied.
Airway & Respiratory

Milford, Massachusetts-Moments after bringing a patient to the Milford Regional Medical Center Friday, two Norfolk firefighter-paramedics found themselves treating patients from a five-car pile-up that included their ambulance.Moments after bringing a patient to the Milford Regional Medical Center Friday, two Norfolk firefighter-paramedics found themselves treating patients from a five-car pile-up that included their ambulance.
Industry News

D.C. fire officials are investigating whether department employees have been running a prostitution ring out of several of the city's firehouses."The allegation is being taken seriously. It is being investigated at this time," said Battalion Chief Kenneth Crosswhite, a spokesman for Fire Chief Dennis L. Rubin. Chief Crosswhite said no action has been taken against any employee in connection with the investigation. He would not say how many people are under investigation or identify the firehouses where they were stationed.