Een bericht van Columbus Fire Station 2, unofficial op Gisteren

Firefighter/Paramedic Josh Fitzpatrick and Firefighter/EMT Jonathan Snyder respond to a 911 call for a person in respiratory distress last week.

The Division of Fire’s Emergency Medical Services response procedures have been modified in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. The changes to patient interactions have been adapted to help us limit possible virus exposure to our EMS staff and to protect our patients as much as possible, while still ensuring our commitment to timely and effective emergency medical services for all residents of Columbus.

The Division’s 911 dispatchers will gather information about any possible contagious emergency from callers requesting medical help and relay the information to our responding medic crews. Callers will be asked:
• Has the patient been exposed to anyone who has tested positive for, or is under suspicion for Coronavirus?
• Does the patient have a fever, cough or shortness of breath?
• Can the patient safely get to the entrance of the building? If so, please meet the EMS crew at the door.

When Division medics arrive, a single paramedic will conduct the patient evaluation, whenever possible, to limit possible exposure to our EMS professionals. This will also minimize the use of personal protective gear on each 911 run in order to preserve precious supplies of gloves, masks and outer-ware. Interviews of family members will take place with the appropriate social distancing space to protect both the household members and the EMS personnel.

The Division medics conducting the patient’s evaluation where contagious risks are suspected will be wearing personal protective equipment, including face respirators, protective eye-ware, gloves and high visibility jackets worn as an additional barrier.

Only the patient and the attending medic will be permitted in the medic unit, unless the medic requests another EMS partner to assist in the evaluation. In the event that a patient with contagious virus symptoms is transported to a medical facility, responding medics will replace or sanitize all protective gear and sanitize the transporting vehicle upon returning to their station before going back into service.

To protect the community as well as themselves, all on-duty Firefighter/EMTs are screened for virus symptoms twice during each 24 hour shift. If a medic crew is notified that a patient they’ve interacted with or transported has tested positive for the COVID-19 virus, the crew members will decontaminate themselves, change clothing and replace all of their protective gear and take the medic/ambulance out of service until it can be completely chemically decontaminated.

Medic and EMT personnel will shower and change out of their uniforms before going home to their families.

The Division has also updated many of the fire stations operations in response to the Coronavirus pandemic, including medical check-in screenings for all arriving shifts, disinfecting all vehicles, radios and door handles, with extra attention to high contact surfaces and door handles. All fire station visitors and civilian ride-alongs are temporarily suspended. Neighborhood residents wishing to speak with their local fire station staff can still ring the exterior doorbell and meet with a firefighter outside the facility. All Columbus Firefighters are observing the appropriate 6.5 foot social distancing as much as possible.

The residents of Columbus have always counted on Columbus Fire in an emergency. The Division’s EMS crews respond to over 360 calls for help every day, so the possibility of exposure to infectious diseases is heightened, as it is throughout our community of first responders and health care professionals.

The Division of Fire has felt the impact of members enduring quarantine or falling ill to Coronavirus. Our response times, however, have remained unchanged. So has our commitment to our mission; to provide timely and effective emergency medical services to the residents of Columbus. The goal of these changes is to protect both the public and our EMS staff as much as possible during this pandemic so we can remain properly equipped and available for any call for help.



Publication author

offline 2 years

Ava Lee

Comments: 0Publics: 303Registration: 10-04-2018