By Staff Reports
(Victor Valley)– Shortly before 3pm Saturday afternoon, Station 4 in the community of Helendale received a medical aid call at the front door of their station.
A family member drove a 62-year-old male complaining of severe shortness of breath to the Fire Station. San Bernardino County Firefighter/Paramedics made contact with the patient and recognized the life threatening condition, which quickly deteriorated into full cardiac arrest. Taking immediate action, the fire crew initiated both CPR and advanced cardiac life support. Twenty minutes into their efforts, the patient regained both a pulse and blood pressure. All of these life saving interventions were provided prior to the arrival of the ambulance. Upon arrival at the hospital, the patient was moving both his arms and legs.
The importance of having firefighters that are cross-trained as paramedics was once again proven in this call. The San Bernardino County Fire practice of staffing paramedics on fire engines was instrumental in the successful resuscitation of this resident. When ambulances have extended response times due to remote incident location or during times of heavy call load, firefighter/paramedics deliver advanced life support treatment when time is of the essence. As evidenced by this call, immediate CPR coupled with rapid advanced life support interventions is critical for patient survival and a positive outcome.
San Bernardino County Fire would like to remind you that if you are having a life threatening medical emergency, the safest practice is to call 911 rather than driving to a fire station or hospital.
Date/Time: March 22nd 2014
Location: San Bernardino County Fire Station 4 Helendale, CA
Incident: Successful CPR Save