The more ALS providers on the scene of a critical incident the faster the tasks are completed, a NIST study shows.
The study examined the performance of two, three and four person crews during three specific scenarios -- accessing a patient and removing them from a scene; care of a patient with multi-system trauma and care of a patient with chest pains who goes into full arrest.
Funded by an AFG grant to the Commission on Fire Accreditation International–Risk (CFAI-Risk), the study was conducted by NIST, Worcester Polytechnic Institute and the IAFF.
"The objective of the experiments was to determine how first responder crew size, ALS provider placement, and the number of ALS providers is associated with the effectiveness of EMS Providers," according to the study.
The investigators noted: 'Delayed response, combined with inadequate personnel resources exacerbates the likelihood of negative patient outcomes. While rapid response is critical to patient survival, the personnel who respond must also be highly competent in patient assessment and stabilizing treatment delivery..."
The project studies deployment of fire department-based EMS resources and the subsequent effect on the ability to provide an efficient and effective response.
Fire-based EMS has been promoted for the last few years by the IAFF, IAFC and other fire service organizations.
Authors of the study say they hope the document will help both fire service leaders as well as city and town officials understand the issues better.