COLUMBUS, Miss., Nov. 6, 2013 – The ambulance service at Baptist Memorial Hospital – Golden Triangle is the first service in Mississippi to have power load equipment installed on all of its active ambulances, according to the manufacturer of the equipment.
The installation of the Stryker lift system on each of the six frontline ambulances in the hospital’s eight-ambulance fleet represents a $160,000 investment by the hospital.
“There are currently no other ambulance services in the state that offer this level of care and protection for their patients,” said Baptist ambulance service Director Edwin Mitchell.
The equipment uses a system of hydraulics and ball bearings mounted to the floor of the ambulance to lift the stretcher and slide it in and out of the back of the ambulance, explained Mitchell. A patient can be loaded in and out of the unit in the same amount of time as the traditional way, but it is safer for the patient and the EMTs, he said.
The system is also rated to keep the stretcher secure inside the ambulance in the event of a side impact or a rollover. The traditional mounting for a stretcher is only rated for a forward impact, Mitchell explained.
The idea for the new stretcher system came out of Baptist’s recent $1 million investment of new safe patient handling equipment throughout the hospital, Mitchell said.
Baptist Ambulance Service
“This equipment makes it safer for our patients being loaded and unloaded and it eliminates the awkward lifting and balancing of the patient,” Mitchell said.
With 315 beds, Baptist Golden Triangle is the largest regional hospital affiliated with the Memphis, Tenn.-based Baptist Memorial Health Care system. With physicians and surgeons representing almost every medical specialty practicing at the hospital, Baptist Golden Triangle offers a wide range of comprehensive medical care to patients of all ages.
The hospital offers a variety of services to the community, including the Baptist Cancer Center, Baptist Behavioral Health Care for those with behavioral and mental health problems, an emergency room with 24-hour ambulance service, an extensive rehabilitation department, and educational programs. Baptist Golden Triangle employs more than 1,000 health care professionals.