Pa. implements new EMS protocols for critical patients

A new state protocol has been approved that requires EMS responders to stay at the scene to treat critical patients for an additional 20 minutes


By EMS1 Staff 

CARLISLE, Pa. — Pennsylvania EMS providers will stay at the scene of an incident to treat critical patients for an additional 20 minutes before transporting them to the hospital.  

A new state protocol requires EMS responders stay at the scene to treat critical patients for an additional 20 minutes, rather than directly transporting them to the hospital, 27 News reported. The change in protocol comes after Pittsburgh researchers found that it will benefit a critical patient more if paramedics treat the patient before they are transported to the hospital. 

“Unfortunately, in the emergency medical services, a lot of how people perceive us is based on how quick we are. Are we moving to the hospital fast enough? Are we just very super-fast taxi cabs? And that’s not where the industry has evolved. We’re bringing the emergency room to you,” said Nathan Harig, assistant chief of Cumberland Goodwill EMS.  

The new protocol takes effect starting in September, and Harig said that EMS agencies are already equipped to treat critical patients on the scene. The hope is that the public is patient in understanding the change in protocol.  

 

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