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New Britain EMS Academy celebrates opening of new home

Published: Tuesday, 24 October 2017 22:30

Wesley Bunnell | Staff
Mayor Erin Stewart listens as New Britain EMS CEO Bruce Baxter explains the ambulance simulation room Tuesday afternoon.
Wesley Bunnell | Staff Mayor Erin Stewart listens as New Britain EMS CEO Bruce Baxter explains the ambulance simulation room Tuesday afternoon.

Staff Writer

NEW BRITAIN – The New Britain Emergency Medical Services Academy has a new home: 1 Herald Square.

Lower Level Suite 50 at that address will be the new central location for the New Britain EMS Academy, where the corporation will train professionals and citizens in basic and advanced medical care. Bruce Baxter, CEO of New Britain EMS, said the new facility meets the program’s needs for today as well as tomorrow.

“This represents a new milestone for New Britain EMS,” Baxter said.

New Britain EMS established the first version of its academy in 2006 in the form of a community outreach and education program. The program was aimed at providing health and safety training, as well as professional development, to local and area community residents and EMS providers.

Initially housed at the Central Connecticut State University Institute for Technology and Business Development, the program expanded into a full-service EMS and Community Outreach Training Academy. Based on its continued growth and success, the academy expanded its space three times at the ITBD over the past eight years and once again needed additional space not available at the ITBD.

The new location features seven simulation rooms where responders can practice scenarios they may run into in the field.

One room mimicked the layout of a bedroom, another a living room, and there was even a room that had a fake New Britain EMS truck in it to give hands-on experience to future - and current - first responders.

The simulation rooms have one-way glass so professionals can monitor students in the academy.

“This is all about training people based on what goes on in the field and not sitting them in a classroom,” Baxter said. “We want them to be compassionate, clinically astute and street ready.”

Baxter said New Britain EMS has trained 989 New Britain residents in CPR in the last year. New Britain EMS has issued a total of 16,000 certificates in first aid CPR through the corporation’s American Heart Association training centers.

“New Britain EMS is an institution. … While it may not be a city department, it certainly functions just like one,” Mayor Erin Stewart said. “We understand and we know that we have to work as a team - as an emergency medical response team - that involves the fire department, the police department and all of our first responders collectively, and we can’t do that without the great partnership we have.”

Skyler Frazer can be reached at 860-801-5087 or by email at sfrazer@centralctcommunications.com.

SIDEBAR – Background of New Britain EMS

According to city officials, the Common Council established New Britain Emergency Services, Inc. as a non-stock, non-profit corporation in 1977. The corporation’s goal was to provide 9-1-1 EMS response, medical care, and transportation to residents and visitors of New Britain who experience a sudden medical or traumatic emergency.

Now forty years later, New Britain EMS has evolved into a collaborative integrated EMS System comprised of partnerships with organizations, including the City of New Britain 9-1- 1 Public Safety Telecommunications Center and the New Britain Fire Department. New Britain EMS works under the clinical auspices and sponsorship of the Hospital of Central Connecticut, New Britain General Campus.

As the lead 9-1-1 response organization for the city, New Britain EMS operates a fleet of six paramedic advanced life support ambulances, four non-transport EMS response units, a special operations trailer, and disaster response trailer capable of managing 75 injured or ill patients.

New Britain EMS units are equipped with lifesaving technologies allowing physician-directed definitive medical stabilization to begin at the site of illness and injury, well in advance of arriving at a hospital emergency department. New Britain EMS first responders respond to nearly 12,000 9-1-1 incidents, care for roughly 14,000 patients with 11,000 transported to hospital emergency departments each year.