Paramedics Earn Transport Certification
MAYFIELD, KY - Air Evac Lifeteam, in partnership with Mayfield Fire Department and Mayfield-Graves County EMS and Jackson Purchase Medical Center, will offer a second five-week critical care paramedic course beginning February 5. Successful completion of the program includes an endorsement as a critical care paramedic from the Kentucky Board of Emergency Medical Services.
Air Evac Lifeteam is providing logistical support and instructors for the course and Dr. Gerald Russell, medical director for the city of Mayfield Fire & EMS, is the course medical director. The critical care paramedic course helps prepare paramedics to serve with competence and confidence in meeting the needs of critical care patients undergoing inter-facility transports. Paramedics from the following agencies have already completed the course: Mayfield Fire & EMS, Murray Calloway County Ambulance Service, Marshall County EMS, Carlisle County EMS, Ballard County Ambulance Service,
Tri-Cities Ambulance Service, Clinton-Hickman County Ambulance Service, and Livingston County EMS.
Air Evac Lifeteam Program Director Mark Harrison said the class sizes are small - from 18 to 20 paramedics. The participants attend two eight-hour classes each week.
"There had been discussion on a regional basis that these classes were needed, and Mayfield Fire & EMS came to us," Harrison said. "We have critical care nurses and paramedics working for us, so we decided to provide
the instructors and Jackson Purchase Medical Center is providing the facilities."
Critical Care classes can cost between $2,000 and $3,000 per person if an EMS agency has to send its paramedics out to take the courses. Air Evac Lifeteam and the Mayfield Fire & EMS offer the course for the cost of the textbooks.
"This will be a good stepping stone for area paramedics," Harrison said. "There are regulations coming down the pike that will eventually require all paramedics to be critical care certified, meaning they will need certification to transport patients to medical facilities in larger cities."
Wayne Floyd, paramedic and director of Carlisle County EMS, completed the first course in December.
"This was such an informative class," he said. "I especially enjoyed the cardiac, pediatric and neonatal sections. Little counties like ours don't have a lot of money to send people to courses like these, so this was great. We want all of our medics certified in critical care transport. Air Evac is a blessing to us, that's for sure, especially from the classroom standpoint and the cost."
Bryan Cutsinger, Marshall County Ambulance Service director, was pleased with the course. He sent four paramedics the first time, and will send three more in February.
"This course is pretty advanced and goes in depth, familiarizing us newer, advanced procedures and advanced equipment," he said. "Take the chest tube for example. It's not uncommon for an EMS agency to transport someone with a chest tube, but unless your medical director teaches you, you don't know how to maintain it or how to solve a problem with it."
Cutsinger especially enjoyed working with the fully automated mannequin. "That's something we just wouldn't have access to," he said. "I appreciate what Air Evac did. It was good for us to get hands-on experience."
Air Evac Lifeteam, an air medical service, provides rapid access to definitive health care for those who live in medically underserved areas. Flight crews, consisting of a pilot, flight nurse and flight paramedic, are on duty 24 hours a day, seven days a week to respond to the scene of an emergency, or provide transportation between medical facilities. Air Evac
Lifeteam currently operates 114 bases in 15 states. For more information, visit www.lifeteam.net or like us on Facebook.