EMS receives American Heart Association award

Published 5:42 pm Saturday, August 15, 2020

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Stanly County EMS has received the American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline EMS Silver Plus Award for implementing quality improvement measures for the treatment of patients who experience severe heart attacks.

Every year, more than 250,000 people experience an ST elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), the deadliest type of heart attack caused by a blockage of blood flow to the heart that requires timely treatment, according to EMS.

To prevent death, it’s critical to restore blood flow as quickly as possible, either by mechanically opening the blocked vessel or by providing clot-busting medication.

The Mission: Lifeline initiative provides tools, training and other resources to support heart attack care following protocols from the most recent evidence-based treatment guidelines. Mission: Lifeline’s EMS recognition program recognizes emergency medical services for their efforts in improving systems of care to rapidly identify suspected heart attack patients, promptly notify the medical center and trigger an early response from the awaiting hospital personnel.

“Stanly County EMS is dedicated to providing optimal care for heart attack patients,” said Dale Chandler, training officer, Stanly County EMS. “We are pleased to be recognized for our dedication and achievements in emergency medical care efforts through Mission: Lifeline.”

“EMTs and paramedics play a vital part in the system of care for those who have heart attacks,” said Tim Henry, M.D., chairman of the Mission: Lifeline Acute Coronary Syndrome Subcommittee. “Since they often are the first medical point of contact, they can save precious minutes of treatment time by activating the emergency response system that alerts hospitals to an incoming heart attack patient. We applaud Stanly County EMS Paramedics and EMTs for achieving this award in following evidence-based guidelines in the treatment of people who have severe heart attacks.”

Stanly County Emergency Medical Services provides care to the nearly 61,000 residents of Stanly County, running more than 9,000 calls for service a year. The service operates at the Paramedic level, under some of the most progressive protocols set out by Office of Emergency Services, NCCEP and Wake Forest Baptist Health, who provides medical direction through an Emergency Medical Director.
The county operates on a 24/72 schedule, responding out of four bases. It is located in Albemarle, Red Cross, New London and just north of Norwood, with six full-time ambulances and a shift supervisor in a quick response vehicle.

Each ambulance is equipped with some of the latest equipment and technology available, performing 12 Lead EKG, DAI, Team Focused CPR, TXA, Capnography, and CPAP. Some of the services specialties include being a part of the Metrolina State Medical Assistance Team (SMAT), Wildland Fire, Disaster Medical Specialists and providing tactical emergency medical support (TEMS) for the local law enforcement agencies.

Stanly County EMS is also involved in outreach programs such as the Safe Kids Coalition of Stanly County and other community education programs.

The American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline program helps hospitals and emergency medical services develop systems of care that follow proven standards and procedures for acute coronary syndrome patients. The program works by mobilizing teams across the continuum of care to implement American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology clinical treatment guidelines. For more information, visit heart.org.