Boundary Ambulance Service - Letter Of Support
Boundary Ambulance Service (BAS) would like to take a moment and share what our partners in the fire service, specifically the volunteers at North Bench Fire, do for us each time they respond on a medical aid call. BAS responds to over 1100 calls for help annually. One of the huge issues we deal with is the fact we live in a very rural area. Unlike paramedics in large urban areas, we deal with calls that can take long response times to get to, many, especially in the winter, may have serious access issues with getting the patient out and to the ambulance. We have a lifeline on these calls and that is our county fire departments. Every county fire agency is dispatched simultaneously with our medics. Most of the time the ambulance arrives last and well after fire personnel. These firefighters have usually made patient contact and can relay patient condition to the responding medics as well as a litany of other tasks. Sometimes these tasks can be lifesaving, like starting CPR on someone, who may not survive until the medics arrive. North Bench has been there, too many times for us to count helping in any of these ways they can.
Working with North Bench Fire is usually for the most part seamless. Chief Jackson has done a tremendous job with the training of his firefighters and it shows. We know that anytime we go into North Bench area, we will have trained firefighters assisting our medics. In a call involving a serious patient this help can be critical. Consider the ambulance crew arrives and finds a patient in cardiac arrest. Our paramedics have numerous tasks that have to be done right away. Securing the airway with an intubation, IV access, first line cardiac arrest drugs to be infused. They have no time to do compression's. The EMT is usually the right hand of the medic and is grabbing everything the medic needs, but if they are doing CPR, then tasks are not done, or are more difficult to complete. When we have NBFD on a scene, the firefighters are trained in ambulance operations and are able to get the power stretcher, grab various equipment from the ambulance, assist in moving the patient, chest compression's, bag-valve-mask etc. All these have to be done and without firefighters, can take an unusually long time, time the patient may not have. This is why national standard is fire response to medical aid calls. In closing, we greatly depend on all county fire departments to respond with us and assist. North Bench is our busiest department we respond with and therefore are a hugely valuable asset. Our response and scene operations would be affected in a negative way if we lost this partnership. I hope that we never have to see this day. Respectfully,
- Jeff Lindsey NRP, CP
Chief of EMS
Boundary Ambulance Service