In January, the rescue squad began using the new Stryker Stair Pro. In the past, EMS providers were required to transport a patient up and down stairs while he/she was seated in a chair. The new Stair-PRO has an innovative Stair-TREAD system that allows EMS to transport a patient up or down stairs without lifting. Scientifically proven to reduce the risk of injury to its operators, the system provides patients with a sense of security that they are safely being moved without relying on individuals lifting them.
In recent weeks the department has also begun using the new Stryker Power-Load Cot System. The Power-LOAD cot fastener system improves operator and patient safety by supporting the cot throughout the loading and unloading process. The system eliminates the need to steer the cot in and out of the ambulance, minimizes patient drops by supporting the cot until the wheels are on the ground, and greatly reduces spinal loads and the risk of cumulative trauma injuries on operators. In addition, the Power-LOAD meets dynamic crash test standards for maximized occupant safety. The device can safely lift and transport patients weighing up to 700 pounds.
Lastly, effective March 1st, the rescue squad will be utilizing electronic Pre-Hospital Care Reports (ePCR). In the past, EMS providers were required to hand write PCRs; running the risk of incomplete or insufficient information and/or illegible handwriting. With ePCRs, EMTs will manage their data and documentation using Toughbooks and software through ESO Solutions. This HIPPA and NEMSIS 3 compliant software allows EMS to accurately, effectively, and professionally relay patient care information to receiving hospitals. EMTs are able to provide a comprehensive patient profile utilizing tools for documenting clinical data; including initial and ongoing assessments, vital signs, past medical history, medications, and specialty patient forms for focusing on certain patient types such as psychiatric emergencies and stroke and trauma patients. In addition, use of this software improves quality management by allowing administrators the ability to analyze data and identify opportunities for improvement in individual providers or the squad as a whole.
All of these upgrades were made possible through the Rhinebeck Fire Department (RBFD) annual budgets, community donations, and RBFD fundraisers. I would like to thank all those who have made these upgrades possible: first, the officers and members of the Rhinebeck Fire Department for understanding the importance of these upgrades and allocating the funds to support their purchase; next, Scott Cruikshank, Village Trustee and Fire Department Liaison, for your continued support of the Fire Department (Rescue Squad) and for your willingness to become educated on the use/need of these systems; and last but not least, the men and women of the Rhinebeck Fire Department who dedicate countless hours in providing exceptional EMS services to our community and committing themselves to learning how to utilize all of these new products. Rhinebeck is truly blessed to have such dedicated and professional individuals providing quality care to its community on a 100% voluntary basis.