TCAD Paramedics considers the health and safety of their personnel to be a top priority. Assaults on paramedics and first responders over the last several years have been increasing. Violent attacks on paramedics have included the use of firearms and other weapons.
Active shooter events and other violent crime scenes now require paramedics to venture into areas where in the past they would not have gone. Research has proven that most victims in an active shooter event perish because of blood loss. Faster access to medical care for these patients can mean more lives saved. Paramedics are no longer expected to wait until a scene is 100% safe. With changing times means paramedics have to change and be ready to handle these types of scenes.
After reviewing incidents from across the country and talking to experts in the field, TCAD Paramedics has invested in ballistic body armor, or bullet proof vests. Earlier this year, each paramedic was measured and sized for their new gear. This new armor is designed for best fit, comfort and protection. The new gear comes with an under-the-uniform carrier or an over-the-uniform carrier. Most personnel plan to wear the armor in the over-the-uniform carrier so that it can easily be removed while at the station. TCAD Paramedics wants to assure the public this upgrade to personnel safety is not because of any event or local threat. TCAD invested in this additional layer of personnel safety to ensure we are prepared if there ever comes a day that we may need it.
The purchase of body armor for paramedic crews was first discussed over two years ago. This investment required adequate time for research, budgeting and getting each paramedic sized. For this reason TCAD feels it is best to prepare now and pray the day never comes that we need to use it. Paramedic crews are not required, but are encouraged, to wear the gear on every call. TCAD Paramedics has developed a list of dangerous situations, based on our existing call triage system, that will alert paramedics to scenes were they need to wear the body armor.
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