Page 7 - HOT NEWS March 2017
P. 7

Success of emergency medical response pilot
A pilot scheme which has seen MFRS deliver life-saving treatment to cardiac arrest patients across Merseyside in partnership with North West Ambulance Service (NWAS) has been hailed a success.
Launched in February last year, the trial has involved both NWAS and crews from MFRS pilot stations being mobilised to incidents where a suspected cardiac arrest (a condition where the heart stops pumping blood around the body) has been reported.
Whichever team has reached the casualty first has begun providing life-saving treatment, with advanced life support being provided once the ambulance crew arrives.
Southport Community Fire Station, Wallasey Community Fire Station and Speke & Garston Community Fire Station were the three stations that took part in the pilot scheme, with crews attending 120 emergency medical response (EMR) incidents between March and December 2016.
During the same period, crews assisted in 54 incidents of
cardiopulmonary resuscitation or CPR (which involves pressing
up and down on a casualty’s chest and administering rescue
breaths) and they achieved a
return of spontaneous circulation or ROSC (where the normal heart
rhythm resumes together with a perceptible pulse) in 17 cases.
To put this in perspective, there are 30,000 cardiac arrests that occur outside of
hospitals in the UK each year with only 10 per cent of those casualties surviving.
Early intervention in cases of cardiac arrest is vital to the patient’s chances of survival and subsequent recovery – for every minute that passes before basic life support can be administered, the chances of survival decrease by 10 per cent.
MFRS was contacted by NWAS 182 times between March and December last year when a suspected cardiac arrest was reported near to the three pilot fire stations.
Southport Firefighters attended 59 EMR incidents, Wallasey crews went to 29 and Firefighters from Speke & Garston Community Fire Station attended
Together, they assisted NWAS in 54 incidents requiring CPR and 27 where the return of
spontaneous circulation (ROSC) was achieved.
Deputy Chief Fire Officer Phil Garrigan said:
“The added advantage to dispatching fire crews is their ability to respond immediately under blue lights,
therefore arriving more quickly to a situation where literally every second can mean the difference between life and death.
“The numbers of incidents our crews have attended during the pilot speak for themselves and the fact they have assisted in returning the heart rate of a number of casualties is testament to their personal resilience, hard work and tenacity. We should all be very proud of what they have achieved.”
In a letter written to crews at Southport Community Fire Station, NWAS Consultant Paramedic Matt Dunn said: “As a direct result of your actions and management at an incident where a patient presented in cardiac arrest, the patient survived and was later discharged from hospital.
“Our interventions in the pre-hospital phase for patients in arrest make a significant difference to the outcome. Our contribution will often determine if a patient survives and is discharged neurologically intact.
“On this occasion your actions resulted in a life being saved and I praise the contribution you made in the care of the patient.
I hope you have similar success in the future.”
Vital Statistics:
The following  gures are taken from March to December 2016 during the Emergency Medical Response pilot scheme.
• Occasions when MFRS was requested by NWAS at EMR incidents – 182
• EMR incidents attended by MFRS – 120
• Incidents where MFRS assisted in CPR – 54
• Occasions when a return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC) was achieved – 17
• Minutes spent travelling to cardiac arrest incidents – 592
• Average time spent travelling to cardiac arrest incidents – 4m 57s
• Minutes spent in attendance at cardiac arrest incidents – 2080
• Average time spent at cardiac arrest incidents – 17m 12s
• Minutes spent in attendance at cardiac arrest incidents where ROSC was achieved – 459

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