So why complicate matters? Let’s go with the simplest system we can find. Aside from the medical, professional and cost-related issues, it may not be long before the public expects EMS to have the same capabilities that their smartphones have. In their view, healthcare is already very expensive, so why shouldn’t EMS have what they have in their $200 smartphone?
Next Month: Part 2—Applications, Essential Steps & Considerations
Register now for our free webcast: What You Need to Know About EMS Telemedicine, scheduled for Thursday, November 17, 2011, at 2PM EDT/ 1PM CDT. This webinar will discuss one of the most controversial topics in EMS today—the use of telemedicine in ambulances. The webcast will cover the technology, how to approach the concept, reasons for and against it, what to consider in implementation and much more. Is EMS telemedicine right for your agency? Attend the webinar to find out.
Author’s Note: Wikipedia is cited in several references because it provides some reasonably accurate but highly understandable technical information.
1. Telemedicine Defined. American Telemedicine Association, July 27, 2011.
2. Emergency_Medical_Services. Wikipedia
3. Lambrew CT, Schuchman WL, Cannon TH. Emergency Medical Transport Systems: Use of ECG Telemetry. Chest 63:477-482, 1973.
4. Mobile Phone. Wikipedia.
5. Wireless Broadband. Wikipedia.
6. Cellular Network. Wikipedia.
7. Mesh Networking. Wikipedia.
The author wishes to extend a special note of appreciation to those who contributed to the preparation and review of this article: Dr. Roy Alson, Head of the Section on Prehospital & Disaster Medicine, Associate Professor, Wake Forest University School of Medicine; Dr. Ethan Brandler, EMS Medical Director, SUNY Downstate Medical Center, NY; Dr. Raymond Fowler, Professor of Emergency Medicine, University of Texas Southwestern at Dallas; Chad Guillot, EMS Director, East Baton Rouge Parish, LA; Dr. Cullen Hebert, Critical Care Medicine Services, Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center, Baton Rouge, LA; Mr. Randy Kearns, MSA DHA(c), School of Medicine at the University of North Carolina; Dr. Steven Levine, The State University of New York Downstate Medical Center; Mr. David Ridings, EMS Assistant Chief, Tucson Fire Department, Tucson, Arizona; Mr. Michael Smith: BSEE, MSBME, C.E.O., General Devices.
Curt Bashford is the president of General Devices and has held many other positions within the company. He holds a BS in Electrical Engineering and a master’s in Biomedical Engineering, and is a former EMT. His experience at General Devices spans 25 years and includes design of many devices used in EMS for sending, receiving and managing information, FDA Regulatory, and managing the design and installation of numerous pieces of equipment, including FDNY, Nassau County EMS, Tucson’s ER-Link and Baton Rouge’s BR Med-Connect. Curt has spoken at conferences, has served on discussion panels and was a member of the DOC NTIA Joint Advisory Committee on Communications Capabilities of Emergency Medical and Public Health Care Facilities.