In the fast-paced, call-to-action world of EMS, every minute counts. Providing safe but swift measures in patient care are two binary concepts that can sometimes clash in the heat of the moment. In recent celebratory news, #SavvikSays feature, Executive Director Beth Wolfe and Pittsburgh Emergency Medicine Foundation (PEMF) have forged dynamic, safe innovations to help save lives and time in Pittsburgh, Pa. by funding a LUCAS device to the city’s EMS Bureau.
Wolfe says, “Thanks to the support and work of everyone involved, it benefits both the patient and provider, and it kicks off something exciting for 2020” The LUCAS Device stands for Lund University Cardiopulmonary Assist System and has a two-fold benefit for the EMS industry in being a chest compression device that saves lives.
First, the device provides continuous CPR with the correct rhythm, rate and depth when serving a patient. By providing continuous assistance to the patient, EMS providers can focus on other life-saving tasks pertinent to the patient’s medical needs. This can be beneficial when more than one person is performing CPR on a patient where trade-offs occur to avoid muscle fatigue, which results in disruption or disconnect to the patient’s well-being. Wolfe says, “A person performing CPR can result in distractions from other life-saving techniques necessary to assure the best patient care. The device helps to accomplish an alternative, safe trade-off and providing continuous rhythm.”
Secondly, LUCAS Device helps to support providers while giving critical care to a patient. Again, CPR can be difficult and physically challenging, bringing fatigue or adverse injuries from muscle strains. In continuing effective CPR, LUCAS Device helps to alleviate the risk of physical injuries that providers may encounter while on the job. Wolfe says, “Providing CPR can be strenuous and dangerous; it gives strain to your back, shoulders and neck whether you’re moving with a patient on a stretcher, down steps or in a moving ambulance. The goal of the LUCAS Device helps to protect EMS providers’ health as well.”
In adding to the excitement, Pittsburgh Mayor Peduto honored Wolfe and her colleagues for their work to support first responders and providers in their time-sensitive and stable care to patients. Fittingly, the Mayor gifted a proclamation, known as “Pittsburgh Emergency Medicine Foundation + LUCAS Device Day” on Valentine’s Day, as symbol to supporting heart health. The EMS Bureau will be able to save more lives securely and safely.
LUCAS Device sets the standard for innovation for providing safe measures to the patient and the provider. Organizations such as PEMF who help fund efficient, life-saving devices also raises that standard of innovation. Wolfe says, “It’s really an exciting time and great feeling to fund one for the city of Pittsburgh. In the future, we are also looking to expand our efforts with raising money and providing one more step in the right direction to help out local EMS services.”