Segree, Winsome A.; Matthews, Anna M.
Author Affiliation, Ana.
Department of Community Health and Psychiatry
Pre-hospital emergency medical services, phase I: Role of the Department of Community Health and Psychiatry
West Indian Medical Journal
Date of Publication
The Department of Community Health and Psychiatry was contracted by the Ministry of Health to assist with the implementation of a pilot programme in the Western Health Region to train fire fighters as basic level Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs), and was responsible for its design, implementation and monitoring for the first 18 months. The course was covered in 440 hours over a 10 week period, and included training in emergency medical response, driving an emergency medical vehicle, emergency medical dispatching and inventory control. Of 76 fire fighters selected for training, 62 graduated, receiving Certificates of Merit from the Ministry of Health, Jamaica and were deployed into service on 17th April 1996. During the period 17 April to 31 December, 1996, the newly trained EMTs responded to 1,299 calls. Medical and surgical cases represented approximately 55% of all calls, followed by trauma (19%), motor vehicle accidents (9%) and obstetric emergencies (8%). Between 15% and 20% of calls in Montego Bay and Negril involved tourists. This first group of EMTs has performed well and was well received by the communities and the persons who used the service.....