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Metro Health Hospital Foundation Grant Allows Wyoming to Expand Emergency Response, Training

The City of Wyoming has expanded its emergency response level and training for firefighters – thanks to a generous grant from the Metro Health Hospital Foundation.

The Foundation awarded Wyoming a $10,000 grant that will allow all of the City’s 27 full-time firefighters to be trained as emergency medical technicians, or EMTs. The training significantly increases the scope of what Wyoming firefighters – who are typically first on the scene after a 9-1-1 call – can do to treat medical emergencies.

The grant also allowed the City of Wyoming Fire Department to upgrade to EMT status. Prior, the Department was licensed as medical first responder, or MFR, which limits the treatment firefighters can provide while waiting for the ambulance. EMT certification allows Wyoming firefighters to provide aspirin (important to administer quickly to a chest pain patient), EpiPen®
(lifesaving to those with severe allergies), blood glucose monitoring (critical for those with diabetes) and other vital treatments.

The Metro Health Hospital Foundation has also indicated its commitment to provide additional financial support for future years to maintain the EMT program and instructor development.

More than two-thirds of all full-time Wyoming firefighters currently are certified as EMTs, which requires approximately 150 hours of training. The Metro Health Hospital Foundation grant will provide funding to train the remainder of the team, as well as necessary equipment for the new certification, allowing the entire department to operate at the EMT level.

“Without this Metro Health Hospital Foundation grant, I don’t know that we would have been able to offer this,” said Brad Dornbos, a firefighter and EMS coordinator for Wyoming. “When you look at our call volume, about 75 percent are calls for chest pains, difficulty breathing, allergic reactions or other medical emergencies.

“Operating at the EMT level allows our department to provide a better level of patient care, which translates into better service to our residents. The more things we can do before that patient is transported to the hospital the easier it will be for the Emergency Department physicians. It’s a win for everyone – and we are so grateful to Metro Health for providing this funding.”

In addition to providing the extensive training needed for EMT certification, the grant will also fund the purchase of six EMT bags, which will contain medications and equipment, including:

  • Continuous positive airway pressure, or CPAP, devices to be used for patients with
    congestive heart failure, or CHF, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD
  • Albuterol for those with asthma
  • King tubes, which provide an advanced form of breathing assistance

“Metro Health is a community hospital. Our mission – and that extends to the Foundation – is to take care of the community,” explained Metro Health Hospital Foundation Board Chair Mike Damstra. “In this case, that means helping to equip our firefighters to improve patient outcomes.”

For more information, call the City of Wyoming at 616.530.7284 or 616.530.7226 or visit www.wyomingmi.gov. Follow the City on Twitter @WyomingCityHall and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/CityofWyoming.

About Metro Health Hospital Foundation

The Metro Health Hospital Foundation is a charitable organization dedicated to improving the health and well-being of the West Michigan community through philanthropy. The Foundation’s support of Metro Health Hospital allows individuals, organizations and businesses to contribute funds that prevent catastrophic illnesses, provide life-saving education and screenings, improve overall patient care and fund a wide variety of programs and services. For more information, visit https://metrohealth.net/about-metro-health/metro-health-hospital-foundation.

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joseph.weller@metrogr.org