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May Drill Of The Month: Engine Company EMS

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GwZdLUff9bg]

After taking a month off due to all of the time-consuming activities Drill of the Month is BACK!

In the above video, we see an Engine company performing EMS on a victim. Every since the advent of Fire Service based EMS response this has become the norm in communities across the country. With the number of ALS providers and the seemingly endless availability of them (in my department there are usually several within a few feet of you on an EMS run) some of our BLS providers may not have the chance to practice their skills as often. There are not many times, but they do exist where we have a completely BLS engine, yet the service expectation by the citizens does not change. If they received advanced care previously then they expect it again.

The solution is to have BLS only drills. Have your BLS providers run a cardiac arrest and play it out without the insertion of an ALS provider. Have them practice their assessment skills on a variety of patients without the presence of advanced care providers, and if your organization allows it, have them take BLS transports while riding their tour on the ambulance.

Additionally you can up there understanding as to what ALS providers do. We call it ALS for BLS and train a majority of our BLS providers how to set up IV’s, acquire 12 leads, set up nebulizer treatments, etc. All of these things only increase the effectiveness of your EMS operations, and improve patient care for the citizens.

There will be a day when your BLS providers are waiting on a medic, will they be prepared? To make sure they are spend some time this month training them to succeed and do BLS skills to perfection. It is true that a good BLS provider can save an ALS provider, I would know I am living proof.

As usual thanks for reading, spread the word, and STAY SAFE!

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