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St. Claire HealthCare Donates BiPAP Machine to Rowan County EMS

St. Claire HealthCare Donates BiPAP Machine to Rowan County EMS

The partnership St. Claire HealthCare (SCH) holds with the Rowan County Emergency Medical Services (EMS) is essential to ensure our community is safe and able to get the care they deserve. While the Rowan County EMS offers emergency services, they also partner with SCH to assist in transporting patients to the different levels of care they may need.

Often, patients in respiratory distress may require ventilatory assistance beyond their hospital stay. This is especially true when patients are being transported to nursing homes, long-term care facilities, or their own homes. When Jeff Hughes, RRT, RPSGT, SCH Director of Cardiopulmonary Services, discovered a need the EMS team had, he knew SCH had to help.

“When transporting someone that is very ill and may need ventilatory assistance, using an actual ventilator can be difficult. Even with the assistance of the EMS team, there are times that a respiratory therapist must also be present for usage of the ventilator machine,” said Hughes. “SCH was able to provide the Rowan County EMS with a bilevel positive airway pressure (BiPAP) machine to take place of a traditional ventilator machine for those needing ventilator assistance, but not total ventilator support.”

A BiPAP machine is appropriate for patients needing ventilator assistance, is less difficult to operate than traditional transport ventilator equipment, does not require a respiratory therapist’s presence to operate, and offers convenience for EMS staff.

“With this device, EMS staff can focus on what’s important … getting patients to their destination safely,” said Hughes. “The team is now able to assume ventilator assistance without the extra aid that was once necessary from the SCH respiratory team.”

Having the BiPAP machine will allow the Rowan County EMS to cut down transport delays and delayed discharges from St. Claire Regional Medical Center. It will reduce complications that were once caused by the use of the ventilator machine and make transportation easier for all parties involved.

“The relationship between St. Claire and the Rowan County EMS and our focus on patient care is so important. St. Claire’s donation will have a major impact on our team and will offer much-needed assistance in taking care of patients during transport,” said Danny Blevins, Rowan County EMS Director.