PH Paramedics Master Pit Crew CPR
By Fire Chief Drew Smith
September 19, 2020

When called to a patient in cardiac arrest Prospect Heights paramedics use a Pit Crew approach. Each paramedic has a specific role. One administers oxygen and artificial respiration. One performs chest compressions. Others apply the heart monitor defibrillator or administer medications. One acts as the leader ensuring the others stay on task. The approach has resulted in a ROSC (Return of Spontaneous Circulation) 39 percent of the time. Compare that to a decade ago when ROSC was seen less than ten percent of the time. That’s a more than 400 percent gain in effectiveness.

Recently our nurse educator presented a series of patient simulations and provided feedback on how each task was performed. This training allows us to master our skills and improve our teamwork so we can keep our high ROSC rate high and perhaps achieve even more ROSC. Our medical procedures meet and exceed the American Heart Association’s Advanced Cardiac Life Support protocols. We also have direct communications with the emergency physicians at Northwest Community Hospital. Good enough is never good enough. We strive for perfection and constant improvement in everything we do.

When we arrive to your home we bring with up a team of five paramedics and over $350,000 worth of lifesaving equipment. Should the patient be found in cardiac arrest the Pit Crew technique is begun and additional personnel respond to reinforce the original team. By constant training we improve and that produces the results described above.