In the case of a severe heart attack, the sooner a patient gets medical attention the better the chance of survival and the better the chance of minimizing heart muscle and brain damage. Time is tissue, so while an ambulance and fire truck are on the way, someone needs to be taking action on the scene. That’s why Cypress Creek EMS trains the public on how to do CPR and how to operate Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs).
Cypress Creek EMS also provides a number of AEDs to our community. Many are located in public places such as churches, sports facilities, and schools while others are in the hands of our Fire Department Partners whose medics are dispatched at the same time our medics are. Whoever gets there first begins treatment.
In addition, CCEMS has more than 30 volunteers strategically located across the district who carry AED kits and radios in order to respond to severe heart attacks that occur in close proximity to them. They can also be messaged at home in case of a heart attack in their neighborhood. These first responders are CCEMS employees and volunteer medics who give of their off-duty time to respond to nearby emergencies.
These volunteers are an extension of a first responder program that has existed since the early days of Cypress Creek EMS when volunteer medics would respond to calls in their own neighborhoods while an ambulance was on the way. And at the start of CCEMS in 1975, there was only one ambulance on the way. Today, there are 18 ambulances and 2 Supervisors on the streets every day. But, even the fastest response time may not be fast enough for a heart attack.
Over the years, Cypress Creek EMS has distributed about 150 AEDs across our district. Those units were still functional but they have now been replaced thanks to our Emergency Services District 11 Commissioners who voted to spend $150,000 to replace them all.
Although modern AEDs can literally talk you through the process, it tends to make unexperienced people understandably nervous. So, Cypress Creek EMS provides training on how to use them.
Voters in our area approved the creation of ESD 11 in 2004 to provide a stable source of funding for 9-1-1 Emergency Medical Services in our district. ESD 11 is a subdivision of state government which has taxing authority.