Colo. unveils specialized 'Medic 420' transport unit
The unit features beaded-curtain loading doors, and has exceeded expectations among patients with extreme stress and chronic pain
By Greg Friese, EMS1 Editor-in-Chief
DENVER, Colo. — At a press conference Tuesday, the Nine Mile Township ambulance squad unveiled its newest specialized transport unit, Medic 420, boasting comfort-enhancing and extreme relaxation features not usually seen in ambulances.
The new unit is part of a response by EMS to changes that have resulted from the statewide legalization of marijuana last year.
With the new unit, patients are first gently loaded through a curtain of beads, where they'll instantly be greeted by a constantly looping soundtrack of Pink Floyd and Grateful Dead songs.
“It's just like walking into Greg Brady’s bedroom,” said paramedic Olive Weed, who's known as Shaggy to his partners.
Other unique features include a ceiling adorned with stickers of stars, planets, and magical creatures that illuminate with a black light.
The new ambulance specializes in transporting patients who suffer from extreme stress, chronic pain, and the need to achieve heightened sensory awareness.
“Dude, our treatment protocols are pretty limited,” Shaggy explains. “We administer a single medication, THC, by a device that is a lot like a nebulizer. All we need is a little bit of saline and the THC preparation, which is made by gently crushing cannabis buds. Since we need an open flame to heat the medication we are not able to administer oxygen. The patient determines their own dose by just breathing in the amount they need.”
Fundraising for the new unit was practically effortless, said Director of Community Relations Thomas Chong.
“Every morning the crew going off-duty would clear out the table of bake sale goods before we could even begin to sell them to the public,” he said.
Requests for Medic 420 are already exceeding expectations.
“So like, we totally anticipated we would be serving mostly teens and college students,” Shaggy said. "But, you know, older adults have lots of aches and pains, and a regular yearning to relive the old days. We give them a confidential and discreet experience that is also low-risk, since we handle the driving.”
The only downside, Chong said, is the drivers' tendency to forget where they are going. Even with computer-aided dispatch and onboard GPS, they still radio several times asking for the address again.