Prep/Portable Policy

MMiz

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All of our units have an 800 MHz Dispatch/Hospital radio in front, with another radio for direct contact with PD.

Our ALS units have a 800 MHz portable for calling med control/hospitals, and another going to dispatch.

Our BLS units by default don't have portables. Usually the ALS units will stash theirs away, leaving BLS with none.

I can't tell you how much I like having a portable. I've used it both on scene, and when just doing a quick errand (with dispatch's approval).

What's your department / company's policy on preps? I notice Rescuelt's fancy one in her picture. We have nice radios, but not mic/speaker clips.
 

ffemt8978

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We have one portable with speaker mic in a charger in each ambulance. Each fire rig has multiple radios, so we just grab one when we get on scene.

The funny thing is, we don't have a radio in the back of the bus. We do all of our hospital comms with cell phones. :angry:
 
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MMiz

MMiz

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Originally posted by ffemt8978@Jul 6 2004, 12:51 AM
We have one portable with speaker mic in a charger in each ambulance. Each fire rig has multiple radios, so we just grab one when we get on scene.

The funny thing is, we don't have a radio in the back of the bus. We do all of our hospital comms with cell phones. :angry:
We also don't have radios in the back of BLS rigs. Our radios for dispatch in front also have all hospitals programmed in, but it pretty useless unless the driver will call it in.

I also use my cell phone, and it's standard practice for BLS units to use cell phones for calling in reports.
 

ffemt8978

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Originally posted by MMiz+Jul 5 2004, 09:52 PM--></div><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (MMiz @ Jul 5 2004, 09:52 PM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'> <!--QuoteBegin-ffemt8978@Jul 6 2004, 12:51 AM
We have one portable with speaker mic in a charger in each ambulance. Each fire rig has multiple radios, so we just grab one when we get on scene.

The funny thing is, we don't have a radio in the back of the bus. We do all of our hospital comms with cell phones. :angry:
We also don't have radios in the back of BLS rigs. Our radios for dispatch in front also have all hospitals programmed in, but it pretty useless unless the driver will call it in.

I also use my cell phone, and it's standard practice for BLS units to use cell phones for calling in reports. [/b][/quote]
It's a good system until your cell phone system goes down or is overloaded.

A lot of our drivers and newer EMT's aren't even aware that there is a frequency in the radio that will allow them to communicate with the hospital or other ambulances. So what they do is go through the dispatch center to relay information that they could have given directly.
 

sunshine1026

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Ambulance has 800MHz radio in front for dispatch/response, and one portable 800MHz radio with charger. To contact the hospital, the 800MHz radios can be used, and there is also a separate radio system specifically used for contacting the hospital. We have a cell phone, as well, just in case nothing else works. :rolleyes:
 

SafetyPro2

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We have two radio systems: the "Red" UHF system is for dispatch and the "Green" VHF system is our tactical system.

All rigs have both systems fixed. The primary ambulance, the primary engine and the two chief's vehicles carry portables for each. The other rigs only have Green portables. All the rigs except the truck have chargers for the portables mounted. The truck portables sit in chargers by our dispatch printer and have to be taken before getting on the rig. All portables except the truck's have handsets attached.

On medical calls, we rarely grab the portable, though on anything else, policy is that you don't step off the rig without a radio unless you're on as an extra person. I try to take the Red portable to the scene and into the hospital whenever I'm driving the ambulance just in case I need to talk to dispatch for some reason.

We too use cell phones for talking to the hospital. ALS units have a base hospital radio system that they use for base contact/medical control (required for some ALS procedures). BLS units don't because we operate without medical control, strictly off protocol. We do try to call in and give the ER a heads up of what we're bringing in though. If the cell phone doesn't work, we can also call dispatch on Red and have them relay a message for us.
 

ffemt8978

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Originally posted by sunshine1026@Jul 6 2004, 07:51 AM
Ambulance has 800MHz radio in front for dispatch/response, and one portable 800MHz radio with charger. To contact the hospital, the 800MHz radios can be used, and there is also a separate radio system specifically used for contacting the hospital. We have a cell phone, as well, just in case nothing else works. :rolleyes:
We're still using the traditional VHF High Band (150-174 MHz). I actually like it better for several reasons.

1. The number of towers that would have to be placed to provide coverage for the entire state is cost prohibitive.

2. You can talk to anybody as long as you're in range. It doesn't require a repeater to be operational to communicate, unlike 800 MHz.

3. Better range with portables and mobile units. Also, the radio waves tend to follow the terrain better allowing better communication in hills and valleys.

South Dakota recently installed a stated-wide, VHF High Band, digital, trunked tracking radio system for all public safety agencies. It operates on a similary principal to 800 MHz trunked systems, but since it is VHF High Band, they were able to do it with a LOT fewer towers (approximately 40 installed statewide). This system also has an analog interface that will allow you to communicate with somebody not on the system, as long as you have a common frequency (Mutual Aid; EMS Mutual Aid; Fire Mutual Aid 1, 2, & 3, etc...). Also, if you wanted to, you could talk to somebody on the other side of the state using the trunked system.
 

sunshine1026

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There have been (and continue to be) problems with the 800MHz system in certain areas of our county that have very hilly terrain, because of the fact that the county has not been able to install a repeater in the area in question. They've only been working on it for about 5 years. :unsure:

The 800MHz system is not statewide here. Each county/city has its own system; most have 800MHz capability, some do not, but we do have mutual aid capabilities and can talk to the jurisdictions surrounding us without much problem.
 

rescuecpt

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We have a portable up front that the "crew chief" is supposed to grab. There is also a portable with a speaker clip in the back, but the crew is not required to take it. We have 800mhz and a good old MedCom/FireCom radio as well as a cell phone in the back. When we call medical control we have to use the cell phone for HIPPA purposes.

The fancy radio I was wearing was taken from the rack at the firehouse - since I'm an officer AND I was driving the ambulance for the parade, I took one of the good ones (we have about 5 at the house - one for each officer - and the chiefs all have their own). I also have a portable at home (without the speaker clip) for when I go straight to scene. :D

And we consider ourselves a po department, go figure.
 

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