Five high-tech tools for EMS providers

For emergency responders, having the right tools can have a dramatic impact on care — particularly if it helps EMS providers come to a quicker conclusion from the initial assessment.
April 12, 2021
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As technology evolves, some of the world’s leading medical suppliers aim to evolve with it, developing equipment and platforms that contribute to the efficiency of emergency response. Paramedics, emergency rooms, and trauma centers all benefit from the accuracy of AI-powered tools that enable timely decision making and improved communications between EMS providers.

Eko CORE Digital Stethoscope Attachment

A more comprehensive assessment starts with enhanced stethoscopes. Not only is the Eko CORE Digital Attachment a game-changer for telehealth purposes, it’s particularly revolutionary in emergency settings. This attachment turns analog stethoscopes into powerful cardiopulmonary assessment tools, much like the 3M™ Littmann® CORE Digital Stethoscope.

Amid the chaos of emergency rooms or disaster scenes, the Eko CORE’s noise-cancelling capabilities and 40x amplification remove disruptive background noise giving EMS providers an ability to auscultate without distractions.

In fact, this sound demo gives a perfect example of how this digital stethoscope can drown out the noise of outside voices, traffic, machinery, and other interruptions that make it difficult to deliver a precise diagnosis.

The advanced AI analysis also allows the Eko CORE software to pick up on nuances that can be otherwise indiscernible to the human ear, making it easier to act fast in critical situations and make confident care decisions when seconds matter.

Point-of-Care Diagnostic Devices

The term “point-of-care” refers to the portability of diagnostic testing. The Eko CORE falls perfectly in this category, as its wireless capabilities make it easy to diagnose remotely, away from the infrastructure of traditional hospital machinery.

There are other advanced medical technologies that thrive in this department as well. A popular subset of point-of-care devices among EMS providers are handheld portable ultrasounds, much like the Philips Lumify.

A point-of-care ultrasound solution can be instrumental in emergency response to respiratory distress. Their ability to transmit ultrasound readings to handheld digital devices, like a smartphone or tablet, means they can perform cardiac imaging on-the-go for patients facing pericardial effusion, systolic heart failure, and more.

Furthermore, it helps with catheterization and needle insertion by helping visualize central and peripheral line placements.

The case for point-of-care testing and treatment is strong, particularly in emergency departments. A study conducted at Massachusetts General Hospital looked at the implementation of a point-of-care satellite testing laboratory in the emergency department, and found that it reduced test turnaround times by 87 percent. As a result, the average length of a patient’s emergency department visit decreased by 41 minutes.

Emergency physicians also experienced a 50% increase in satisfaction with the point-of-care testing laboratory’s turnaround time, as it allowed them to develop quicker diagnoses and treatment plans so they could service more patients in a shorter amount of time.

Flexible Monitoring Platform

Heavy-duty yet incredibly transportable compared to most Automatic External Defibrillators, a flexible monitoring platform like the Tempus Pro is a must-have new-age tool for EMS providers — particularly paramedics.

It is compact and lightweight, so that emergency responders can easily loop it over their shoulder, yet it thrives with its dual monitoring and resuscitation capabilities. More and more of these devices are being deployed across emergency response vehicles for their ability to provide ECG measurement and reliably communicate data remotely to nearby trauma centers.

Furthermore, devices like the Tempus Pro are built upon a platform of expansion, allowing it to act as a variety of life-saving devices all at once. The USB and wireless interface allows it to also perform video laryngoscopies, as well as ultrasound and vascular examinations.

Automated Chest Compressor

Automated chest compression devices, like the LUCAS or the Lifeline Arm ACC, apply mechanical chest compressions for resuscitative care. The immense precision and state-of-the art mechanics allow these machines to outperform the human hand.

A study performed at the emergency department in North Shore University Hospital showed that automated chest compressions improve the rate of returned spontaneous circulation from 26% to 41% — a 15% difference.

Wherein various external factors can otherwise affect traditional CPR — fatigue, staff shortages, patient transport — an automated chest compressor is not hindered by these factors. The quality of CPR can have a critical impact on a patient’s likelihood for survival in an emergency situation, and this highly specialized technology can help EMS providers ensure better potential outcomes.

HIPAA-Compliant Cloud Platforms

Perhaps the most crucial factor in an emergency situation is response time. New, HIPAA-compliant cloud platforms streamline and automate EMS so providers can provide the best care as quickly as possible.

Software like AIM streamlines EMS workflow, allowing for timely call intake and quick dispatch to the emergency scene.

All critical information about the patient’s status and medical history on these programs can be easily accessed by the emergency care team and by the EMS billing department.

With these tools driving the future of emergency care, one component links them all: cohesion. Comprehensive care platforms integrated with connected, digital screening tools enable all members of a patient’s care team to access the information they need for proper assessment and determination of treatment plans. This is especially pertinent for driving favorable outcomes in emergency situations.

Ellie Batchiyska is a writer for Stethoscope.com, an Eko Authorized Partner and proud retailer of Eko’s advanced digital stethoscope lineup.