| Jul 15, 2005

Feature article, July 14, 2005

Feature article July 14, 2005

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Northbrook Ambulance station gets official opening

by Jeff Green

The ambulance base has been occupied by paramedics since July of last year, but with the opening of a brand new base in Napanee last week, Lennox and Addington County Officials decided to have an opening in Northbrook as well.

There is an ambulance stationed in Northbrook, with two paramedics to staff it, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, but that doesnt mean they are always at Airport road in Northbrook. The Lennox and Addington ambulance service is an integrated service, and when one rural ambulance gets a call, other ambulances are moved to strategic locations to cover more territory.

So, the Northbrook ambulance is often located up Highway 41 towards Denbigh, or south at Erinsville. There are even times when the Northbrook ambulance is called upon to cover for Frontenac County and moves to a location near Arden, or over to Hastings County to cover territory to the west.


George Mapp is one of 23 paramedics who maintain two 24-hour ambulances at the Denbigh and Norhtbrook stations. He says people dont always realise that an ambulance from Northbrook could end up quite far a-field.

If this ambulance from Northbrook happens to be sent to Kingston to transfer a patient, and is just starting back when a call comes from Kingston and it is the closes one to the scene, it will be dispatched to the scene. When the call comes, we go.

Laura Barnett is a relatively new member of the Northbrook team. She says that in the few months shes been working, shes delivered patients to Renfrew, Belleville and Perth, as well as Napanee and Kingston.

Along with ambulances, there is a helipad at Pine Meadow Nursing Home, which is a stones throw from the Northbrook base, for more grave situations.

Obviously when people are located in more remote areas, we cant offer the response times like they can offer in cities; but we do a good job for a rural service, says George Mapp. I got a call a while back from the end of the Hughes Landing road over on Sheldrake Lake. It was 26 minutes from Highway 41, so there was no way we could get there is 13 minutes, but we do the best we can.

Mapp is also licensed to deliver six drug therapies, including nitroglycerin (cardiac) glucacin and glucacell (diabetes), ventolin (lungs), Epiphinephren (allergic reactions, and ASA.

The Northbrook crew uses one of the larger ambulances, which has two stretchers and two extra seats, so it can do multiple transfers.

We cannot transfer two code 4 (the most serious cases) at one time by provincial regulations, but we can do a code 4 and a code 3 transfer, Mapp said.

The ambulance service also works hand in glove with the volunteer firefighters and the OPP.

Firefighters that are trained for emergency medical service are great in accident and fire situations, said Laura Barnett, You can imagine how hard it is to do CPR non-stop for an hour.

Also available from the Northbrook base is an Emergency Vehicle staffed by the base supervisor, who generally works weekdays. The Emergency Vehicle can go out to calls and stabilize patients while waiting for the ambulance to arrive to take them to hospital.

The Northbrook ambulance base was previously located on Highway 41 between Northbrook and Flinton, and there was more drive in traffic at that location than on Airport Road, but people are welcome to come to the new base. Its still best to phone 911 however, because the paramedics are not always stationed at the base.

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