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CHH Paramedic Intercept Service Adds New Vehicle

November 18, 2021

Hartford HealthCare (HHC) and Charlotte Hungerford Hospital’s (CHH) Paramedic Intercept Service now has another critical tool to provide advanced life support assistance to rural volunteer ambulance units that operate in many towns in the northwest Connecticut.

The hospital unveiled its new emergency response vehicle, a Chevrolet 2500 pickup truck, to a cheering crowd of HHC and CHH staff, community leaders, local first responders and volunteers at a recent dedication ceremony.

During an emergency, CHH Paramedics certified in Advanced Life Support, are dispatched for additional assistance at the scene and during transport to the hospital. This is meant to supplement and enhance the services of local EMS units to help patients receive the most timely and consistent care.

“This is a great day,” said Jeffrey Flaks, president and chief executive officer of Hartford HealthCare. “This program is going to be an extraordinary partner in helping people in their times of greatest need. First-responding emergency services – it’s at the heart of who we are at Hartford HealthCare. We are grateful for the service of all of our first responders, and are enormously proud to be inaugurating this program today.”

Dan McIntyre, SVP of Hartford HealthCare and president at CHH, thanked all those involved in the two year effort to obtain the needed approvals and create the service. Kevin Ferrarotti, Hartford HealthCare’s senior system director of EMS, gave recognition plaques in thanks to the team who implemented the project.

The CHH Paramedics Team, based at the CHH Emergency Department, responds when asked by the local Litchfield County Dispatch. Since its introduction Oct. 25, it has responded to over 60 local emergency calls, including motor vehicle accidents and fires. The team serves the towns of Goshen, Harwinton, Bantam, Litchfield, Morris, Northfield, Barkhamsted, Colebrook, New Hartford, Norfolk, Winsted and Winchester/Winsted, covering the needs of over 40,000 residents in the northwest area.

There are many benefits to having local paramedics as part of a rapid response team as they are skilled at determining scene safety and immediately identifying environmental hazards. Using their enhanced assessment skills, paramedics are also able to quickly determine airway, breathing, circulatory and disability status of patients having been trained and certified in CPR, ACLS, HAZMAT, stroke, and sepsis management.

Last year, CHH joined other HHC hospitals by hiring six paramedics to work in its emergency department for a new program modeled after one at Windham Hospital which operates in the HHC East region.

“Our paramedics are highly trained individuals really making a difference every day in our community,” said John Capobianco, the hospital’s Vice President of Operations.

As a system, Hartford Healthcare uses paramedics who, in addition to a wealth of EMS experience, hold advanced certifications in critical care transport and flight medicine. Although their primary responsibility is to respond to 911 calls within the county, they also assist in the emergency department and throughout CHH as they aid in rapid responses to internal medical, cardiac and respiratory alerts in all area of the Hospital.

“A great deal of their expertise lies in the area of leading a resuscitation event, so we are truly privileged to have them assist here at Charlotte Hungerford,” said Annie MacAulay, MSN, RN, CEN, Director, Emergency Services, NW Region, Hartford Healthcare.