Emergency Medical Technician Explains Medical Services Provided To UAM

By D.C. Miles
Junior Editor

tv_News 10dbMONTICELLO – Unfortunate events for students at the University of Arkansas at Monticello often end up in need of medical attention.

   Local ambulance service Southeast Emergency Medical Services provides much of the medical attention for UAM.

   SEEMS is a private advanced life support Ambulance service, which would be owned by an individual and not by a city or county.

   In typical municipal ambulance services, the city insures everything, providing the citizens with the benefits of insurance.

   In private services, the individual who owns the service provides the insurance themselves. Nothing in a private ambulance service has to go before city council, nor would it be considered within a city budget like the typical municipal services.

   Ben Crossett, emergency medical technician via SEEMS, explains in more detail about the service and what they provide for UAM.

   “As far as the services rendered, a paramedic ambulance service is a paramedic ambulance service no matter where. They basically do the same thing,” Crossett said.

   He said any service would have to go through the Department of Health and the division of trauma to be authorized. All services have to be certified at the level required when attempting to provide what’s necessary for medical necessities.

   In the issue of an emergency, Crossett explained the best thing to do in any emergency is to immediately dial 911.

   “That call should go straight to the call center at the Monticello Police Department to the dispatch center. You need to say where they’re at, give clear directions to where you’re at on the campus of UAM,” Crossett said.

   He said public safety should be notified if they haven’t been at that point.

   “If public safety has not been notified, make sure you inform them that you haven’t notified public safety because normally they’ll meet us there.  Stay calm. Tell exactly what’s going on to the best of your ability,” he said.

   He said if the dispatcher cannot understand what is going on, then we can’t get the proper information before we get there.

   “Calling 911 is the first thing you should do. Clear directions, what building you’re in out there and stay calm. You don’t want to upset the patient any more than what they already are,” he said.

   Crossett referred to the more common emergencies he and his fellow medical servicemen have encountered on a regular basis.

   He said the common emergencies typically involves diabetic patients, seizures and respiratory calls. He said he thinks those would have to be the most common three at UAM. He also said you never know when your blood sugar is going to bottom out as far as diabetes.

   He explained if diabetics know they have to eat properly and know what they have to do, it’s easy to control, but just as hard to control at the same time.

   Crossett said respiratory calls can be anything from anxiety to someone who has lung disease – any number of things can require a respiratory call.

   Crossett said those with seizures who are taking medication may know that the medication does not absolutely prevent the seizures.

   “If you have a mental problem, then it’s a medical problem. There’s nothing wrong with people that have a psychiatric problem. We recognize that as a medical problem,” Crossett said.

   Crossett acknowledges the good participation in UAM students when an emergency arises. He said UAM has been good about calling if they have an actual emergency.

   “If something is different than what they called for, we just ask that when we get them in the back of the ambulance, they tell us what’s really going on. We’re not going to run and tell. We can’t do that by law. Our job is to get a student some help. We can’t help if you don’t tell us what’s going on,” he said.

   He said with Monticello having two private ambulance services in town, if someone preferred to have SEEMS, they must inform the 911 dispatcher.

   “If you would like to use our ambulance service, then when you dial 911, you need to request SEEMS. If you don’t, then it’s going to go by whose (next in) rotation,” he said.

   George Cingolani, paramedic for Monticello Ambulance Services said, “(A) 911 call comes in and dispatches us to, lets say, Maxwell Hall. We ask dispatcher what is the possible injury. If they know, we prepare for that. We then head to campus and appropriately tend to the scene.”

   Cingolani continued and said, “Campus police would meet us there and give us the notification if the issue requires an ambulance (service) to carry on with the situation. We then take the patient into care, treating them as necessary, depending upon the case.”

   Crossett said Arkansas has implemented a new policy dealing with trauma. He said If you have something broken or a head injury, SEEMS can take you straight to another facility. They do not have to go to the local hospital.

   “If we know that you have a broken limb or have a head injury, we’re going to call in on the radio to Little Rock, and we’re going to say we need to know if Jefferson is open for ‘neuro’ or ‘ortho’ or however. And, we’re going to go from the scene to that hospital – we’re not going to stop here,” Crossett said.

   He said SEEMS tries to meet the guidelines of the 60 minutes required. He said if they are able to take the patient to another facility to be able to receive the proper treatment and care, whether it be a head injury or broken limb, then the service will do so.

   “If you have to stop out here we know that they’re not able to treat that, so that makes the ‘golden hour’ just extend longer,” he said.

   Crossett asks anyone who wants to find out any more information to feel free and come visit at the station on the corner of Hyatt and East Gaines. One can also visit the services at the UAM football games.

   “We enjoy being there for you,” he said.

   For more information, contact Southeast Emergency Medical Services at (870) 367-2300.

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