June 30, 2016
ISSUE | PUBLIC SAFETY Take care of paramedics, EMTs The Pennsylvania legislature should amend the Heart and Lung Act to include paramedics and EMTs ("Bill adds to safety workers' benefits," Monday). The act, written in 1935, was intended to provide public safety personnel with full compensation while temporarily disabled from injuries sustained in the line of duty, but it excluded paramedics and EMTs because those job classifications did not exist at the time. In Philadelphia, paramedics and EMTs are considered essential personnel who, like firefighters and police officers, respond to fires, building collapses, explosions, active-shooter scenes, Hazmat situations, and other incidents with mass casualties, such as last year's Amtrak derailment.
June 28, 2016 |
HARRISBURG - Philadelphia firefighters are looking to get their EMT and paramedic peers in the city's Firefighters and Paramedics Union the same disability coverage they enjoy. The Heart and Lung Act of 1935 compels employers of public-safety workers such as police and firefighters - but not EMTs and paramedics - to get their full pay and health coverage during time off for an on-the-job injury. With help from Rep. Frank Farry, a Bucks County Republican and volunteer firefighter, the union, Local 22, is pushing to extend those protections to emergency medical workers, making them "financially whole" while on disability leave.
May 19, 2016 |
THIS KIND of behavior could get a guy killed in New Jersey. NBC News reports that Claudio Bevilacqua , a paramedic who was called to aid James Gandolfini after The Sopranos' star suffered a fatal heart attack in 2013, went on trial Monday in Rome for allegedly snatching the $3,000 Rolex Submariner off the actor's cold, dead wrist. Talk about cold. He could be Tony Soprano's mother. However, it is possible that the watch vanished before the actor collapsed. Possibly from his hotel room.
February 3, 2016 |
Most patients don't have heart failure on an empty table, with good lighting all around and nothing to obstruct the paramedics who respond to the 911 call. "My first cardiac arrest was in the backseat of a taxi cab," said Scott Kasper, Virtua Health's assistant vice president of emergency medical services. Virtua's paramedic training program in South Jersey has long prepared students for the real world by sending them out into it. Now it's hoping to bring more real-world complexity to campus.
February 1, 2016 |
The patient was one the medic recognized. She had been to his home more than a few times. He was a diabetic who often slipped into hypoglycemic shock, and his family called medics over once or twice a week. The medic - a veteran with 13 years on the job - and her partner, a trainee, found the patient passed out in the basement. As they treated him, he started to come to. And that's when he reached under his pillow and pulled out a gun. "I'm not going to the hospital," he told the stunned paramedics.
July 27, 2015 |
On a Thursday afternoon in early May, AlDora Sample was gasping for breath. She called 911 a few minutes past 5 p.m. from her home in Camden. But the paramedic squad stationed in the city was tending to a drug overdose, so the dispatcher summoned a team from three miles away, in Pennsauken. At rush hour, it took the medics more than 12 minutes to get to Sample's tan-sided house on Ware Street. Was that fast enough? Emergency medicine experts say evaluating a paramedic service based on its response times is a tricky proposition at best, depending on the type of emergency, geography, and other factors.
July 13, 2015 |
If all goes as ordained by New Jersey lawmakers, six months from now Camden will be served by a fleet of brand-new ambulances and emergency vehicles staffed by paramedics and medical technicians working for Cooper University Hospital. Cooper, a teaching hospital and a designated Level 1 trauma center, was authorized to take over these services in legislation signed by Gov. Christie last week. Will Camden residents needing emergency care be better off? They will be, Cooper officials promise and some EMTs cautiously hope.
July 4, 2015 |
Two weeks before New Jersey legislators, without debate, voted overwhelmingly to have Cooper University Hospital take over paramedic services in Camden, a state panel of emergency medicine professionals recommended against the move. Two panel members say they and others objected to the plan because it never went through the normal state Department of Health process to vet such a major change. The Virtua health-care system, a competitor of Cooper, has had the job for 38 years. A dozen other members of the New Jersey EMS Council declined to comment, did not return reporters' calls or e-mails, or said they were not present for the vote at the group's quarterly meeting June 10. The advisory group, which includes physicians, emergency officials, and other experts, reports to the Department of Health.
June 17, 2015 |
TRENTON - South Jersey Democrats are fast-tracking a bill that would give Cooper University Hospital control over paramedic services in Camden, currently run by a rival hospital, in a move that critics say circumvents state regulations. Committees in the Assembly and Senate on Monday each advanced the legislation, sponsored by two Camden County Democrats, Assemblyman Gilbert "Whip" Wilson and Sen. Nilsa Cruz-Perez. The legislation, introduced last week, is expected to reach the floor of each house for a vote before lawmakers break for summer at the end of the fiscal year, June 30, by which time they must pass a balanced budget.