Richmond Ambulance Authority receives American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline EMS Recognition Award

RICHMOND VIRGINIA APRIL 29, 2015 — The Richmond Ambulance Authority has received the American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline® EMS Silver Award for implementing quality improvement measures for the treatment of patients who experience severe heart attacks.

Every year, more than 250,000 people experience a STEMI, or ST Elevation Myocardial Infarction, a type of heart attack caused by a complete blockage of blood flow to the heart that requires timely treatment. To prevent death, it’s critical to restore blood flow as quickly as possible, either by surgically opening the blocked vessel or by giving clot-busting medication.

Unfortunately, a significant number don’t receive this prompt treatment. Mission: Lifeline seeks to save lives by closing the gaps that separate STEMI patients from timely access to appropriate treatments. Mission: Lifeline’s EMS recognition program recognizes emergency responders for their efforts in improving STEMI systems of care and improving the quality of life for these patients.

Emergency Medical System providers are vital to the success of Mission: Lifeline. EMS agencies provide access to 12-lead ECG machines (devices that measures the electrical activity of the heartbeat and can help medical personnel determine if a heart attack has occurred), and follow protocols derived from American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology guidelines. The correct tools and training allow EMS providers to rapidly identify the STEMI, promptly notify the medical center, and trigger an early response from the awaiting hospital personnel.

Agencies that receive the Mission: Lifeline Silver award have demonstrated at least 75 percent compliance for each required achievement measure for the entire year, and treat at least eight STEMI patients for the year.

“EMTs and paramedics play a vital part in the system of care for those who have heart attacks,” said Nancy Brown, Chief Executive Officer of the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association. “Since they often are the first medical point of contact, they can shave precious minutes of life-saving treatment time by activating the emergency response system that alerts hospitals. We applaud The Richmond Ambulance Authority for achieving this award that shows it meets evidence-based guidelines in the treatment of people who have severe heart attacks.”

“The Richmond Ambulance Authority is dedicated to providing the best pre-hospital care in the country, and the American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline program is helping us accomplish that by defining processes for improving STEMI systems of care with the goal of improving the quality of care for all STEMI patients in the City of Richmond,” said Chief Executive Officer, Chip Decker. “We are pleased to be recognized for our dedication and achievements in emergency medical care for STEMI patients.”

Employee of the Quarter

Employee of the Second Quarter: Chris Ward

Congratulations to Communications Supervisor Chris Ward who is our Employee of the Quarter!

Chris has been employed with RAA since November 15, 2010 and is a Night Shift Supervisor in the Communications Center. Chris has distinguished himself as being incredibly supportive of his co-workers and makes sure all of his SSC’s have the resources and information that they need to be effective for our field providers and patients.

A strong leader, he pays close attention to the needs of our field providers by providing timely information, adapts quickly to situations, and boosts the morale of his employees by being extremely observant of everything going on in the Communications Center and letting them know that he cares about their personal and professional development.

Chris is a shining star on the RAA team!

RAA employee recognition

Employee of the First Quarter: Garett Freeman

Congratulations to Paramedic Corporal Garett Freeman who is our Employee of the Quarter!

Garett has been with RAA since December 2011, and according to his peers, consistently maintains a professional and positive attitude on and off the clock and is always eager to help other employees reach their goals. Garett has been known to stay beyond his EOT to help preceptees and colleagues with tutorials on equipment, assistance with documentation, or to help develop a greater understanding of protocols.

Garett is the current Chair of the Clinical Services Committee and his commitment to the team has served to drive the enthusiasm and engagement of other field employees.

Simply put, Garett exemplifies the reason why RAA provides world class EMS and we are so proud to have him on the RAA team.

We would also like to recognize the additional nominees that also deserve kudos for doing a great job here at RAA. The Employee of the Quarter runner ups and recipients of a certificate of recognition are:

  • Clay Stanley – Vehicle Support Technician
  • Julie Szala – HR Recruiter
  • Abbey East – Vehicle Support Technician
  • Ben Gomes – System Status Controller

RAA is Active RVA Certified

The Richmond Ambulance Authority is officially ‘Active RVA Certified’ for 2015 for implementing programs to promote physical activity and create a culture of health and wellness in the workplace.

Active RVA

In January, RAA rolled out their new RAA Fit initiatives for employees, which include a $50 credit toward participation in an approved wellness activity or tool, such as joining Weight Watchers, wearing a FitBit, or joining the RAA Runs team.

RAA also created Fruity Fridays for January – March as a way to provide healthy snacks for employees during the winter months.

The organizations that are Active RVA Certified serve as role models in the community, and the certification program  recognizes those organizations encouraging physically active lifestyles for their employees.

Check out for ideas and best practices on wellness and physical activities for individuals, communities, schools, and businesses.



RFD life saving awards

RAA Medics and EMTs Honored at RFD Annual Awards Ceremony

RAA Medics and EMTs were honored at last week’s Richmond Fire Department (RFD) Annual Awards ceremony.

RAA crews of Medic Steve Faynor and EMT David Hilliard, and Medic Shawn Elliott and EMT Scott Cowdery were honored for their efforts. They were all presented life saving medals by RFD for their joint action alongside first responding fire crews in reviving or rescuing patients responded to by RFD’s first response units.

RFD fire fighters are all trained as EMTs and fire companies co-respond in the city, along side RAA paramedic crews to calls deemed to be life threatening in nature.

Congratulations again to Steve, David, Shawn and Scott for delivering World-Class EMS!