October 15th, 2009
New London Hospital's emergency services received the EMS Unit of the Year Award at a recent ceremony sponsored by the Division of Fire Standards and Training & Emergency Medical Services and the Emergency Medical and Trauma Services Coordinating Board. The purpose of this distinction is to recognize a NH Licensed EMS Unit for exemplary service to its community.
The award is the result of a nomination submitted by New London Chief of Police David Seastrand. Chief Seastrand reviewed the history of the New London Ambulance Service (NLAS) beginning as a volunteer 9-1-1 service in 1974. He described NLAS long-standing commitment to providing educational opportunities to EMS providers. One example of this commitment is an EMT course offered to National Guardsmen about to be deployed to Afghanistan.
Examples of community service on the part of NLAS include a staffed ambulance at high school football games, support at Colby-Sawyer College's commencement and other events, involvement with career days from kindergarten to high school, and support for the New London Fire Department and the New London Police Department.
Chief Seastrand related an extraordinary example of unity, teamwork and community service that occurred earlier this year. A seriously ill patient was unable to be transported to Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center through conventional means, Chief Seastrand explained.
“After hours of exploration and investigation,” he continued, “a solution was found that involved the deployment of a National Guard Chinook helicopter to New London. The helicopter was outfitted with medical supplies and the NLAS team was instrumental in providing patient care and in ensuring a successful patient transport.”
Currently, New London Ambulance Service is an Advanced Life Support service, staffing two ambulances daily and a third on call. The crew is comprised of 19 Paramedics and 17 EMT-Intermediates. Each ambulance is staffed at the Paramedic level whenever possible. The team works as an integral part of the Emergency Department with physicians, nurses and other providers as partners in patient care.