THE UPS & DOWNS OF EMS
HEMS TAKES OFF OVER
Northern Ireland is the latest country
to integrate helicopter EMS (HEMS) into its
prehospital care—and it has wasted no time
in serving its community.
During a ceremony introducing its two
new air ambulances, medics received a call to
help a young boy involved in a tractor accident
on a farm. The 11-year-old became the first
person to be treated and saved by the helicopter responders.
Bringing HEMS to Northern Ireland was
the dream of John Hinds, MD, who tragically
died in 2015 while providing EMS care during
a motorcycle race. He was 35 years old.
We give a thumbs up to local health experts,
government officials and medics for finally
launching HEMS in Northern Ireland after
more than a decade of hard work. The new air
ambulances, along with the talented medics
inside them, will help create a safer, health-
Yet another story of compression-only
CPR saving a life has emerged, high-
lighting the importance of teaching the pub-
lic this practice.
In an article posted to the Time magazine
website, author Molly Alter detailed how,
during her senior year of high school, she got
dizzy while hanging out with some friends.
Though she insisted these fainting spells were
normal and that an ambulance was unneces-
sary, her friends rightfully ignored her wishes
and dialed 9-1-1. Alter soon became uncon-
scious without a pulse. While someone fetched
the school nurse, a friend named Jackie began
performing hands-only CPR. She had learned
the technique in an EMS training class.
The nurse soon arrived with an AED. It
took four shocks to get Alter’s heart beat-
ing again. When paramedics arrived, it was
nearly a half hour after Alter had gone into
cardiac arrest. Because of the quick action of
her friends and school nurse, Alter was able
to avoid any major health consequences such
as brain damage or death.
Later, Alter was diagnosed with heredi-
tary hemorrhagic telangiectasia and is now
an advocate for hands-only CPR education.
We give a thumbs up to Alter for shar-
ing her firsthand account of CPR in action.
This story, along with her education advocacy,
illustrates how important it is to teach this
lifesaving practice to all people, regardless of
age or occupation. We also give a thumbs up
to Jackie for acting quickly and recalling the
skills she had learned in her EMS class. JEMS
Sandwich eatery Firehouse Subs has
donated more than $17,000 toward
the purchase of nine new bulletproof vests and
emergency medical kits for Ada County Para-
medics (ACP) of Idaho.
The vests will be used by ACP’s TacMed
team of SWAT-level medics who train with
and work alongside law enforcement officers
who serve high-risk warrants, respond to barricaded subjects, perform hostage rescues, dispose
of explosives and enter active shooter hot zones.
The new vests provide 360-degree coverage,
unlike older vests that only protected against
bullets on one side. TacMed’s primary goal is to
ensure officer survival, but they also provide life-saving care to victims, bystanders and suspects.
The Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation has raised $28 million dollars over 12
years to give to various public safety agencies
that apply for grants.
We give a thumbs up Firehouse Subs for
their generous gift to ACP's TacMed team. The
new gear safeguards the team to safely and efficiently respond to and care for trauma patients
without getting hurt themselves.
The new bulletproof vests provide 360-degree coverage, safeguarding tactical paramedics in dangerous situations. Photo courtesy Ada County Paramedics
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