Every so often I post on a series of events that appear to be formative or important for EMSers. Here goes:
After a tragic helicopter crash (is there any other kind?) it is common for the media to examine how air medical services are used (or abused). The recent Wisconsin crash is no different. The Capital Times from Madison, WI tackles the issue.
The Houston Fire Department has been authorized to begin a tele-nurses program to help reduce non-emergent use of ambulances. The Houston Chronicle tells this story.
The Pittsburgh Tribune Review has an article on increasing EMS response times. This pretty lame article is probably predictive of what others around the country will say--and won't say. The article compares response times to three somewhat non-comparable cities but fails to trend calls in Pittsburgh over time to see if volume is responsible for the mounting delays. (The Chief does say he is handling the "same number of calls" but it still leaves me wondering not only about the volume of calls but if there are changes in priorities of calls.) The EMS Chief says budget cuts in 2003 are responsible for the increase. It is important to note that the response time to highest priority calls has stayed the same. It sounds like an EMS audit is about to be released. This piece certainly doesn't take a critical look at the issues.
That's it for the news. Stay safe.