After years of sharing ideas by phone, email and a what's app group, הצלה members from 20+ neighborhoods came together for the first time to brainstorm on ambulance design, technology, service and procurement. To help facilitate the discussion, 18 ambulances from New York, New Jersey, and Maryland were on display. Combined, these neighborhoods operate a fleet of approximately 150 ambulances. Those in attendance got to see ambulances from four of the leading ambulance manufacturers on a variety of vehicle chassis. In addition, participants got to see and operate the latest in emergency lighting, communications, patient handling, storage, and medical equipment.
Senior Care Ambulance graciously hosted the event in their state of the art garage and generously sponsored dinner for the 40 plus members in attendance.
What a couple of the Baltimore Hatzolah members had to say:
"It was extremely valuable to get together and share experiences and expertise with regards to the often unnoticed technical side of Hatzalah, such as design and equipment. This was a unique opportunity to spend time learning how other Hatzalah organizations design their ambulances and order equipment. Collaborating together can help all of us become better and more efficient."
"Each ambulance takes months and hundreds of hours to design as every inch is important when having to work on critical patients in a confined space. B”H, Baltimore was able to tap into the broader Hatzalah knowledge base to help design our ambulances to best serve the community. This event was an incredible way to see various design ideas and discuss ways to gain efficiencies and cost savings in procuring very expensive EMS equipment. Conversations ranged from pros and cons of power stretchers to reduce injuries to Hatzalah providers, to automated tools to track vehicle maintenance, to what Shabbos features were on the ambulance to minimize melachah (after a call is over). I feel comfortable saying that every neighborhood left with valuable ideas for their own ambulances as the online dialogue has not stopped. On a personal level, the sense of achdus from the diverse group of attendees was palpable and even though we came "all the way from Baltimore" it was clear that we all shared a common goal."