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Emergency medical services expand specialist teams

Two new, specially equipped cars have been purchased by emergency medical services (NMPD) specialist paramedic crews to help other NMPD teams, the service said March 24.

Specialist paramedic brigades are one of the advanced resources of the service. These teams consist of an experienced reanimatologist anesthesiologist or emergency doctor, along with a doctor's assistant, who is also a driver at the same time. This brigade cannot be called by the patient itself. It shall be called by medics already working at the site of incident or they are dispatched in the event of an accident with a large number of victims.

Unlike the usual brigades who go with the big emergency medical vehicles, this brigade moves with an individual vehicle and does not transport patients. The brigade works at the scene, stabilizing patients in critical condition.

The specialist brigades have been formed gradually since 2015. By 2019, there were three, but now the number is doubled, and they are located in all regions. Every day, 6 such crews are on duty in 24-hour mode, located in Jelgava, Grobiņa, Daugavpils, Valmiera and two in Rīga where the number of calls is the highest.

Last year these brigades went on 3,989 calls, almost twice as many as in 2018, when 3 such special brigades were on duty throughout Latvia. Also, specialist crews made 196 successful resuscitations last year, saving 56 lives more than a year earlier.

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