Patients who do not require ambulance/litter transportation. A wheelchair patient should be medically stable, requiring minimal medical intervention and or expected treatment. One individual drives the van, with no attendant in the proximity of the patient to render immediate care. The patient must be able to sit in a wheelchair. Psychiatric patients by policy require a minimum of two crewmembers, therefore are not a candidate for wheelchair van transports. Many insurance companies do not cover wheelchair charges, thus making payment of the transport the responsibility of the patient.
Patients who require Basic Life Support transportation should be relatively stable, not requiring any form of invasive procedures, (ie: IV infusions; intubation; EKG monitoring, etc.). Capped IV ports are permissible for BLS transportation. Patient self-regulated medication pumps are allowed, only if the patient can maintain the device.
A BLS crew will not be responsible for any pump or medication administration should that pump fail. A BLS crew will consist of a minimum of two certified Emergency Medical Technicians, allowing one EMT to be present in the patient area. This transport will need to be deemed medically necessary by a physician, prior to transportation.
Patients that require Advanced Life Support inter-facility transports, requiring a higher level of care than a BLS transport. These types of transports would see a patient with IV access, medication administration (within the scope of practice for paramedics), EKG monitoring, and or advanced airway management. EMT-Paramedics are required to function under a Pennsylvania Department of Health authorized medical command physician. Transports that would exceed a paramedic scope of practice would be triaged and moved to the Critical Care Transport level (see below). This transport will need to be deemed medically necessary by a physician, prior to transportation.
A patient who has the potential to deteriorate or has interventions and treatments beyond the paramedic scope of practice. Any retrieval from an acute care hospital, greater than 25 miles from Penn State Hershey Medical Center, should be considered a critical care transport. Typically arrangements need to be made to replace the EMT-Paramedic with an Emergency Department Registered Nurse. A Respiratory Therapist may also augment the staffing of critical care transports. Hershey Medical Centers’ preferred mode of transportation for patient retrievals greater than 25 miles and falling under the Critical Care Transport heading, would be by air transport or Life Lion Flight Services. This transport will need to be deemed medically necessary by a physician, prior to transportation.
A newborn or infant that is required to be transported in a special isolette, consisting of transports that can be of the retrieval or take-back mode. Patients transported in the isolette require an EMT-Paramedic to be in the patient care area. Any retrieval from an acute care hospital typically requires arrangements to be made to replace the EMT-Paramedic with an Emergency Department Registered Nurse and or a Respiratory Therapist. Hershey Medical Centers’ preferred mode of transportation for NICU retrievals greater than 25 miles would be by air transport or Life Lion Flight Services.