|Tipp EMS Introduces Lucas 2|
|Written by Nancy Bowman|
|Wednesday, 07 November 2012 00:00|
Mark Senseman admits that the Tipp City Emergency Medical Service’s newest team member is rather odd looking, and makes noise.
The Lucas 2 cardiac compression machine, though, has shown its worth in helping to save lives.
The local EMS team is introducing the community to the machine, which takes the place of a person doing the cardiac compressions element of CPR.
“You still have to have someone to manage the airway, people to start IVs and to administer drugs,” Senseman, EMS chief, said.
The cardiac compression machine was bought for around $11,000 using money from the city’s capital improvements program.
EMS staff trained on the Lucas 2 and a second compression machine available before settling on the Lucas 2, Senseman said.
“The reason for it is that medical science is telling us that we have to have very consistent compressions. On an adult, we need that two inches every time, all of the time,” he said.
The standard calls for 100 of the two-inch compressions each minute.
“One of the things studies have shown is people get distracted and the rate drops below 100, or they go too fast. You get tired and you can’t get the two inches of depth or anytime you move the person it is very, very difficult, so some of your compressions are not effective,’ Senseman said.
If there is interruption and there is more than 10 seconds of ineffective compressions, it is like starting over, he explained, adding, it then takes two minutes to get the patient back to the level before the interruption. An interruption could come from moving the patient into an ambulance or continuing the compressions during the ambulance ride down the road.
The battery-powered machine can be assembled quickly by crews, placed on the patient and started. It is programmed to figure out how much force is needed to get the two inches of depth in chest compressions, and gets to work.
The machine is similar to an automated external defibrillator (AED). It is designed so someone who has never seen it can open it and start, Senseman said.
The machine doesn’t get tired, and frees up a medical person to help with other activity. It also allows for the critically important consistent compressions while the person is being moved and on the way to the hospital.
“It’s funny looking, it makes noise, but it does what a person should do, if we could always be fully accurate,” Senseman said.
For staffing purposes if one less person is needed on the ride to the hospital, that person can help staff the station for other calls that may be received.
The first ambulance leaving station will use the compression unit. Plans are to purchase one additional unit in both 2013 and 2014 to have one for each ambulance.
Most of the EMS staff is trained in using the unit. Senseman said he’d also like to see police officers and firefighters trained in use.
Tipp City is the first Miami County community with the compression machine. Senseman said others are in use in Huber Heights and in Columbus.
“These machines have been shown to have a 6 percent improvement in survivability to the hospital. It is because the CPR is not stopped. This keeps good CPR going, which contributes to the improved outcomes,” he said.
EMS personnel will tell families on calls when they are going to use the machine.
Anyone with questions about the compression unit can call the EMS department.
“This is another tool, another extra chance,” Senseman said of the response to cardiac victims. “In those circumstances, you want all of the chances you can get.”