I am currently a first responder in the City of Phoenix and have been working in the emergency service field for 28 years. Our profession has experienced significant cuts due to the economic collapse over that last several years. An increase in call volume with reductions in personnel has had a direct impact on service delivery and response times. In our profession early intervention is essential for any chance of a positive outcome.
Trained bystanders and/or facility employees are the first line of treatment for any medical emergency. Seconds truly count when a true medical emergency occurs and rapid intervention has a direct effect on survivability.
In my experience I have witnessed a lack of care when medical emergencies occur in assisted living and other like facilities. I have often wondered why there is not some level of training required for employees and/or volunteers who work in these facilities. I have been told that it is a helpless feeling for these individuals when they have to call 911 without the ability to initiate any form of treatment.
The people who reside in these facilities and their families need to be assured that there are trained personnel readily available to initiate treatment in a time of need. Basic equipment and training is the right thing to provide at every one of these facilities but it will not happen voluntarily.
Our organization is in support of the RightCare Foundation Immediate Resuscitation Initiative and legislative proposal because early intervention by properly trained and properly equipped individuals will increase the survivability of any medical emergency.
Thank you for your consideration of this important and lifesaving proposal.
President, United Phoenix Fire Fighters Association
Captain, Phoenix Fire Department