South Thomaston Ambulance
While we all adjust to the new “normal” I want to take a moment to say that we here at South Thomaston Ambulance are continuing operations as usual and we will be here to serve you in this time of need. That being said, we do have a few changes required by the cornavirus. First, when you contact dispatch they will be asking you some conronavirus-specific questions and it is important to answer these so our crews can be prepared appropriately for the call.
When the ambulance arrives on scene you may only see one crew member come in initially and do a quick assessment of the patient. This person will be wearing a gown, gloves, mask, and glasses or googles. Once the patient has been evaluated then the remainder of the crew will enter wearing the appropriate personal protective equipment. This procedure will be based on the information we get from dispatch that is why it is important that they get the correct information, especially if there is a fever or breathing difficulty.
The hospitals are limiting visitors. So, we also have to limit those who ride in the ambulance to the hospital. This means that if the patient is a competent adult then they will not be able to have anyone ride in the ambulance to the hospital. If it is a guardian situation or the patient is a minor then one parent/guardian can go with the child. I want to get this info out to avoid delays on scene if possible. Also, the availability of N-95 masks is at a critical level. If you are in a trade that uses them and have extras that you can spare we could use them.
Most importantly, in this time of social distancing and isolation, it is important to make sure to continue to check on each other from time to time. Make connections, especially with people who live alone, to ensure they are safe and have what they need. With the hoarding of supplies it is possible that many people on fixed incomes may not have the supplies they need. Reach out and connect through phone, text, e-mail, video messaging, or any other distance communication method. If you are unable to reach a family member or friend we are willing to check on them for you if we are available.
Lastly, remember, this is not the first pandemic we have been through. If we all work together, take care of ourselves and others, follow the recommended precautions, and be patient we will come out the other side stronger, more resilient, and better prepared for the next emergency.
Amy Drinkwater EMTP, IC, CP
EMS Director, South Thomaston