Hitting Close to Home
This month, the parents of the patient featured on the August JEMS cover and Call to Action share their gratitude for the quality of care–and coverage–he received. Also, Rick Kendrick, creator of the Kendrick Extraction Device (KED) weighs in on Joseph P. Hopple’s July JEMS article on effective methods for teaching flexible immobilization. Finally, the president of Care Ambulance provides perspective on an August Thumbs Down about DeKalb County, Ga., officials’ decision to terminate their contract with the ambulance service.
Thank you to JEMS and to photographer Kevin Link for the wonderful article, “High-Angle Rescue on Top of Feed Mill.” As the parents of the young man injured at the top of the 134-foot feed mill, we’ll be eternally grateful to all the EMS providers who rescued him from his precarious situation. I wish I could personally thank each and every one of them for their expertise, courage and care–not just for this rescue, but for every time they go to work.
Your article (“Flexible Immobilization: Improvisational tools for teaching this skill”) was most excellent. For 30 years, I’ve been trying to teach providers that every person they care for requires their attention and skills. Too often, rescuers relinquish their patient to a machine and an algorithm and lose the “art” of actually connecting with a person in their care.
Although I’ve designed and manufactured equipment to stabilize and package patients, I’ve never told anyone that this equipment is the only way to get the job done. I try to teach them to evaluate the patient and their condition and then determine what equipment will best stabilize them and also make them as comfortable as possible. Providers should modify the equipment that best meets the patient’s need and observe and adjust as conditions change.
Keep up the good work. I’m sure your students are getting excellent training and are learning many valuable skills.
Mooresville, North Carolina
In the section that refers to “Fatal Flaws,” you draw a conclusion that isn’t accurate. If you had done some further investigation, you would have found that Care Ambulance provided the ambulance and staffing, but DeKalb County actually dispatched the units. It was their (DeKalb County officials’) error in dispatching and not passing along the proper response location, which caused the delay, not Care Ambulance officials or its employees.
President, LifeStar Response/Care Ambulance
This article originally appeared in November 2010 JEMS as “Letters.”