DENTON — The Caroline County Department of Emergency Services showed off its new ambulance to the county commissioners at their meeting Tuesday, Oct. 1.
“This is a big first step in updating the fleet,” said Emergency Medical Services Division Chief Ryan Todd.
The new ambulance cost $172,500, covered by department and dedicated county funds, and was placed in service the week of Sept. 23.
The department hopes to order a second, identical ambulance within the next few weeks, depending on how the first one’s equipment and layout works for staff. The second one will be paid for using more dedicated county funds and an annual grant from Shore Health System to help defray the department’s transportation expenses.
Todd said the ambulance’s layout is designed to allow emergency medical care providers to do more for patients en route to the hospital, while allowing the provider to stay safely seated.
This is also the first ambulance in the county to include a small refrigerator, to chill IV fluids. Those chilled fluids slow brain activity and metabolism for patients who have suffered a cardiac arrest or other major event, Todd said, which has been proven to improve their survival chances.
Other county ambulances chill the fluids in coolers with ice packs, but that makes it difficult to maintain the correct temperature, Todd said.
“We expect over time (the upgrades) will pay dividends for the outcomes of our patients,” said Department Director Bryan Ebling.