Curtis C Sandy, MD

August 31st, 2015

An emergency can happen at any time and emergencies often demand immediate action. By calling 911, you activate the emergency medical services (EMS) system; a chain of highly trained providers from dispatchers, EMTs and Paramedics, to flight nurses and flight paramedics. These teams are dedicated and ready to provide each patient with lifesaving interventions whether it is in the home, on highways or in remote areas. While the main focus is on patient care, the EMS system is much more than a ride to a hospital. It is a well-organized system of medical professionals who are each trained to coordinate care and provide life-saving treatments prior to arrival at a hospital.

Each part of the EMS system – dispatch, first responders, EMTs, paramedics and flight crews – is committed to delivering excellent pre-hospital care in accordance with current standard of care protocols. While dispatch can start the process by providing life-saving instructions, EMTs and paramedics are trained to handle a wide range of conditions and provide a rapid response to provide care. At the scene of an emergency, EMTs and medics also provide critical information directly to the hospital emergency physician so appropriate personnel and equipment can be ready upon arrival to the hospital. The treatment received in those first moments can mean the difference between life and death.

As a leader in the field of emergency medicine, Portneuf Medical Center takes an active role in medical direction, education and training of EMS personnel, and providing critical care air transport. As the EMS Director for our area, I work to establish protocols for emergent situations that adhere to the best practices and standards of care; I facilitate the coordination and collaboration between and among the various agencies so we are prepared and ready for every kind of emergency. Collectively, we operate several programs designed to educate and train EMS responders so that all EMS personnel are on the same page when it comes to patient care, treatment, transport, and advancements in EMS medicine.

Portneuf Medical Center, in conjunction with Portneuf Air Rescue, hosts EMS Night Out, a quarterly educational event for EMS personnel in the region. The evening is set aside for discussion, networking and education. EMS personnel receive training on current trends, advancements and up-to-date information as it relates to prehospital care in the field as well as situations that may present in the transport environment.

EMS Night Out includes an expert physician lecturer on a timely topic. While our upcoming seminar will focus on sports medicine, including concussions and other common sports injuries, previous topics have addressed cardiac care, trauma, stroke, pediatrics, and a host of other emergent situations.

When it comes to saving lives, Portneuf Medical Center is committed to providing quality care in our emergency department. We are also committed to supporting quality field emergency care in the region. We hope to achieve a continuity of excellence in emergency care from the minute 911 is called until that individual is transferred to our emergency department. We are fortunate to have a highly trained and seamless system of emergency medical services that can make a difference in life and death situations.