Am­bu­lance com­pany in­tro­duces ‘blood draw pro­gram’

The Times Herald (Norristown, PA) - - FRONT PAGE - By Gil Co­hen For Dig­i­tal First Me­dia

WHITEMARSH » It’s a typ­i­cal week­end night in the emer­gency room of a lo­cal hos­pi­tal. Nurses and doc­tors are fran­ti­cally at­tend­ing to pa­tients who have been brought in with al­co­hol poi­son­ing, drug over­doses, as­saults and in­juries sus­tained in ve­hi­cle ac­ci­dents. Into this hec­tic scene, two po­lice of­fi­cers ap­pear with a male who ap­pears to be un­der the in­flu­ence. One of the emer­gency room staff stops what he is do­ing to draw blood from the new pa­tient. The in­ter­rup­tion costs the po­lice of­fi­cers up to 30 min­utes in lost time.

In an effort to cut down on this lost time, Whitemarsh Com­mu­nity Am­bu­lance has in­tro­duced

what it calls the “blood draw pro­gram.” In­stead of tak­ing the sus­pected DUI in­di­vid­ual to the hos­pi­tal, po­lice take the per­son to the po­lice sta­tion where they are met by am­bu­lance per­son­nel who draw a blood sam­ple and turn it over to the po­lice.

“We are eas­ing up the work­load of both the emer­gency room staff and the po­lice depart­ment,” stated Re­becca Werner, chief of op­er­a­tions for Whitemarsh Com­mu­nity Am­bu­lance. “The po­lice of­fi­cers are able to get on the street faster and at­tend to more press­ing mat­ters while, at the same time, hos­pi­tal per­son­nel are also freed up to at­tend to other pa­tient prob­lems.”

Werner, who is also a para­medic at Bryn Athyn Am­bu­lance, learned about the “blood draw pro­gram” while work­ing a shift at Bryn Athyn. “The po­lice depart­ment have enough to do as it is,” she said. “And we feel that this is just a lit­tle some­thing we can do to al­le­vi­ate their stress. We have a good work­ing re­la­tion­ship with the Whitemarsh Town­ship Po­lice depart­ment. They rou­tinely as­sist us on car­diac ar­rest calls, car­ry­ing med­i­cal equip­ment, crowd con­trol and block­ing traf­fic.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.