Technology of Tomorrow

Technology is progressing around us and EMS is no exception. Last week at EMS Today in Baltimore, MD, I had a chance to spend a decent amount of time on the exhibit hall floor. Everywhere I turned I saw laptops, tablets, and new software that can track and quantify almost every aspect of the job.

As manufacturers of Cardiac Monitors and AED’s, Phillips, Zoll and Physio Control have to each try and be on the cutting edge just to compete with one another. I took a walk through each of their respective booths at EMS Today, and had a couple of products catch my eye.

1. Phillips — On the second day that we were there, Chris Kaiser from Life Under the Lights told me I “had to go check out Phillips’ new monitor.” I went over to their booth and found their MP2 model. It is an incredibly sleek, compact and portable monitor that I can see a number of uses for, but as Chris pointed out, it certainly has its limitations. Mainly, the monitor itself has no way to print out or transmit an EKG. While it would be great at simply monitoring a patient or doing a quick assessment (at… say… a special event or by a first responding bike team) transferring the information to another caretaker might prove difficult.

With time and a little bit of polishing (and maybe some feedback from a paramedic or two) I think Phillips will have a great piece of equipment on their hands with an extremely practical pre-hospital use.

2. Zoll — I spent a lot of time at the Zoll booth this year. I don’t have a ton of experience with their products, but boy what a company. I think one of the things that continues to impress me about them is how receptive they are to the pre-hospital provider. They’re extremely supportive of us, and their products show it. This year at EMS Today, they helped unveil the new iPCR, a revolutionary new take on computerized charting.

It was only a matter of time before someone took the Tablet PC concept to the iPAD, and while the new device can run many different ePCR platforms, I’m anxious to see what it will be able to do with Zoll’s products in the future. I’ve seen their ePCR program, and I’ve worked a bit with Resource Planner. Its great software! Check out the iPCR website. You might see some familiar concepts and symbols.

3. Physio Control — Much like Dallas, Physio Control stood out to me for one main reason: their education. The booth was constantly abuzz with some sort of class taking place. Most notably, Tim Phalen was teaching classes, and if you’ve ever studied EKG’s, you know who he is. Once again, they had their LP-15 on display. I have not had a chance to use one in the field, but I hope to someday soon. I’ve done a bit of tinkering with them when I’ve seen them on display at a conference or with friends whose services have them, and I am really impressed with the options and versatility of it.

Technology continues to advance, and these three companies seem to have their finger on its pulse more so than most. To all three companies, I thank you for your contributions to the EMS Community. Keep up the good work.


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