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Hopkinton Fire Department Ambulance Service First in Region to Implement the Selective Spinal Assessment Protocol

By contributor,

Following several hours of training with Hopkinton Fire Department Medical Director Dr. Jeff Hopkins, along with many hours of development of a thorough operating guideline by Lt. Gary Daugherty, the Hopkinton Fire Department ambulance service became the first service in the region to get medical approval from Milford Hospital to implement the Selective Spinal Assessment Protocol. The new protocol recognized by the Massachusetts Department of Emergency Medical Service, is a service option that allows Hopkinton’s highly trained EMTs and Paramedics to make medical assessment of potentially injured people that was previously only done by ER physicians. The objective is to reduce the morbidity of those individuals who would not benefit from routine spinal immobilization.

Consistent with Hopkinton Fire Department history, the department remains on the leading edge of Patient care and once again was allowed to spearhead a pilot medical project. Several recent and not so recent examples are CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) that reduces the need for intubation, hospital stay time and ultimately decreases every increasing health care costs, the ResQPOD Impedance Threshold device, and most recently, the LUCAS automated chest compression device for CPR, both of which help increase survivability and recovery after suffering cardiac arrest.

The Hopkinton Fire Department continues to offer the highest level of pre-hospital care in the area and will continue to increase its medical capability as it becomes available. The training and confidence, the medical professionals from not only Milford Hospital, but the regions hospitals have been a key component to the capability and success of these EMTs and Paramedics. The confidence and recognition of service excellence these Physicians have in Hopkinton’s Fire/EMS personnel will continue to keep this forward thinking, progressive department racing ahead and providing the highest level of care available for years to come.

During difficult financial times, the Hopkinton Fire Department’s commitment to excellence has not slowed down and continues to find ways to improve service. Hopkinton Fire Department would like to thank the residents of Hopkinton for their continued support as we continue to work diligently to set service standards for the area.

Please feel free to come to fire headquarters at 73 Main St for a closer look and check the department website for the Open House schedule during Fire Prevention Week in October.