Health Break | Published May 21, 2007 | Written by Rich A. Kelley, NREMT-P

In Case of Emergency

May 20-26 is National Emergency Medical Services Week with the theme Extraordinary People, Extraordinary Service. At Mount Nittany Medical Center, Medic 24 cares for the community every day and night in emergency situations and reminds the community to call for EMS if the following conditions arise:
  • Uncontrolled bleeding
  • Difficulty breathing, shortness of breath
  • Chest or upper abdominal pain or pressure
  • Fainting, sudden dizziness, weakness
  • Changes in vision
  • Confusion or changes in mental status
  • Any sudden or severe pain
  • Severe or persistent vomiting or diarrhea
  • Coughing or vomiting blood
  • Suicidal feelings
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Shortness of breath
Call 9-1-1 if you think the medical condition is life threatening. Emergency Medical Services in Centre County is ready and prepared to care for you quickly and effectively and transport you to the appropriate facility for your care. Medic 24 at Mount Nittany Medical Center offers advanced life support to care for patients in severe distress, and assist in the transportation to the appropriate medical facility along with your local Basic Life Support ambulance provider. At the scene of an accident, disaster, or medical emergency involving critically injured and unconscious persons it is important to be able to reach a contact person to acquire medical history or even to notify next of kin. Emergency responders recommend and support a program for persons carrying a cell phone. The suggestion is called ICE for "In Case of Emergency". The letters ICE can be entered into the contact list of a person's cell phone and contain the phone number of the person to be contacted In Case of Emergency. By looking up "ICE" on an injured person's cell phone contact list, emergency personnel and others can quickly find the right person to contact. And if you don't arrive at the Emergency Department by an ambulance, keep in mind that patients are triaged. Triage nurses assess the severity of the patient's illness or injury and determine the appropriate care area. Patients are not seen on a first-come, first serve. basis, but instead are cared for based on the level of severity of their injury or illness. All patients are cared for regardless of their ability to pay. In preparation for the untimely medical emergency, Mount Nittany Medical Center encourages patients to always have a list of medications and allergies. Log onto the Medical Center's website and print an easy to fill out Medication Card or call the Communications Department at 814.234.6727, and we would be happy to send you one. Mount Nittany Medical Center is proud of Medic 24 and the care this valuable and hard working team provides to our community and our Medical Center 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. As this year's theme emphasizes, EMS providers are committed to saving lives every day and night, even putting their own lives on hold as they respond to medical emergencies. Rich Kelley is the Paramedic Coordinator of Mount Nittany Medical Center's Department of Prehospital Services.