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IDAHO FALLS, ID — The Idaho Falls Fire Department has received the American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline® EMS Gold Award for implementing quality improvement measures for the treatment of patients who experience severe heart attacks. The department was able to achieve this high level of achievement by meeting evidence-based treatment standards for two consecutive years.
Every year, more than 250,000 people experience an ST elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), the deadliest type of heart attack caused by a blockage of blood flow to the heart that requires timely treatment. To prevent death, it’s critical to restore blood flow as quickly as possible, either by mechanically opening the blocked vessel or by providing clot-busting medication.
The Mission: Lifeline initiative provides tools, training and other resources to support heart attack care following protocols from the most recent evidence-based treatment guidelines. Mission: Lifeline’s EMS recognition program recognizes emergency medical services for their efforts in improving systems of care to rapidly identify suspected heart attack patients, promptly notify the medical center and trigger an early response from the awaiting hospital personnel.
“The Idaho Falls Fire Department is dedicated to providing optimal care for heart attack patients,” said Eric Day, EMS Division Chief. “We are pleased to be recognized for our dedication and achievements in emergency medical care efforts. Thank you to all of our first responders and a special thank you to Tammy Coffel, Quality Management Specialist at Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center for her commitment and expertise.”
“EMTs and paramedics play a vital part in the system of care for those who have heart attacks,” said Tim Henry, M.D., Chair of the Mission: Lifeline Acute Coronary Syndrome Subcommittee. “Since they often are the first medical point of contact, they can save precious minutes of treatment time by activating the emergency response system that alerts hospitals to an incoming heart attack patient. We applaud the Idaho Falls Fire Department for achieving this award in following evidence-based guidelines in the treatment of people who have severe heart attacks.”
About Mission: Lifeline
The American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline® program helps hospitals and emergency medical services develop systems of care that follow proven standards and procedures for acute coronary syndrome patients. The program works by mobilizing teams across the continuum of care to implement American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology clinical treatment guidelines. For more information, visit heart.org.
Photos: Idaho Falls Fire Department training and practicing placement of the Lucas Device, a mechanical chest compression tool. / IFFD's newest ambulance located at Station 4 on Woodruff Avenue.
Media Contact: Kerry Hammon, Public Information Officer, Idaho Falls Fire Department at (208) 612-8122 or [email protected].