Critically ill and injured children from all over the state and region are regularly transported to West Virginia University Children’s Hospital. Now, thanks to a partnership with Jan-Care Ambulance, they will arrive in a state-of-the-art critical care ambulance.
“Essentially, it’s a critical care unit on wheels,” Cheryl Jones, R.N., director of WVU Children’s Hospital, said. “It is equipped to do exactly what an ICU can do.” Inside the ambulance is everything you would find inside the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit or Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at WVU Children’s Hospital from medications to equipment.
The ambulance is spacious enough to transport children from birth through adolescence. Infants can be transported in a car seat or an isolette. It is equipped with a diesel-powered generator that allows the patient compartment to work even during a vehicle failure. The ambulance is GPS tracked and has a drive cam installed with back up cameras.
In terms of medical equipment, the ambulance has the capabilities of monitoring arterial catheters, which monitor blood pressure and can be used for arterial blood gas measurements. It also has a pacemaker generator and top-of-the-line ventilator.
When another hospital requests the ambulance to transfer a patient to WVU Children’s Hospital, the pediatric transport team is set into motion. WVU Children’s Hospital provides a respiratory therapist and a NICU or PICU transport nurse. Jan-Care staffs a driver and an emergency medical technician, who have received additional training in the care of the critically ill and injured child. Transport staff members are on call 24 hours a day.
“We are so grateful for this partnership with Jan-Care and so proud to be able to provide this service to the children of West Virginia and the surrounding region,” Jones said.
The new ambulance is certified as a critical care transport unit through the West Virginia Office of Emergency Medical Services.
CONTACT: Angela Jones, HSC News Service