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Armstrong Paramedic and EMT Receive National Recognition at Stars of Life Banquet

Armstrong Paramedic John Sossei and EMT Ron Keech were recognized at the American Ambulance Association’s Stars of Life banquet.

Armstrong Paramedic John Sossei and EMT Ron Keech were recognized at the American Ambulance Association’s Stars of Life banquet.

From June 23-26, Armstrong Paramedic John Sossei and EMT Ron Keech visited Washington, D.C., and were honored for their extraordinary efforts and contributions to the field of emergency medicine.

The American Ambulance Association’s Stars of Life program celebrates the contributions of ambulance professionals who have gone above and beyond the call of duty in service to their communities or the EMS profession. Each June, The American Ambulance Association honors and recognizes Star of Life recipients from around the country who were nominated by their colleagues, peers and people they work with, who believe they are superb EMS practitioners.

Keech has been with Armstrong for five years and in that time has established himself as a leader, mentor and role model for his colleagues. He’s also regularly commended by patients and their family members for his kind, compassionate approach to helping those in need.

“Ron places high importance on every interaction he has, whether it’s with colleagues here at Armstrong or with patients and family members while responding to calls,” Armstrong CEO Rich Raymond said. “He truly represents what it means to go above and beyond in his role by applying a personal touch to his work with our patients, as well as by taking on various leadership responsibilities that make us all better at our jobs.”

Sossei joined Armstrong after serving as a non-commissioned officer in the Air Force and later as a paramedic in California. His work ethic, command presence, and kind, firm, and honest demeanor have set a positive example for his Armstrong teammates. Sossei has quickly advanced throughout his career as a seasoned and astute clinician, peer leader, Field Training Officer and AHA instructor.

“John is the consummate paramedic professional who is able to handle any situation with the care and attention it deserves,” Raymond said. “He is an open-minded and vocal leader who is a truly gifted member of our team, and he’s extremely deserving of this honor.”

The Stars of Life awards ceremony served as the culmination of a three-day visit to Washington D.C. that included meetings with Sen. Edward Markey and Rep. Katherine Clark, where they discussed relevant legislative initiatives.


Armstrong Ambulance EMTs Take Part in Water Rescue Training

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Armstrong EMTs Nick Landry and Stephanie Gleason with DCR lifeguards Brandon DeCleene, Aiden Hill, Sophia Leuci, Jackie Leuci, Lexi Bogosian, Erika Glowik, Shannon Daly and Zara Powell.

Armstrong Ambulance Service took part in extensive water rescue training exercises this week.

Along with colleagues from the Saugus and Lynn Fire Departments, Stoneham Police/Fire Dive Team and lifeguards from the Department of Conservation and Recreation, Armstrong EMTs took part in a wide-ranging live water rescue training program at Breakheart Reservation in Saugus.

Armstrong EMTs provided land-based EMS support while lifeguards and fellow first responders underwent hands-on training to understand their roles in rescuing a swimmer in distress. The drills included the use of water craft, rescue scuba divers and posted lifeguards, and focused on multiple hazardous conditions on the water.

Various first responders were tasked with identifying a potential victim, locating and rescuing that victim and providing an area for firefighters and divers to attempt a rescue or recovery.

“Our EMTs need to be prepared to support their fellow first responders in a wide variety of emergency scenarios,” Armstrong CEO Rich Raymond said. “I’m glad that we had an opportunity to participate in this highly realistic training exercise so that our EMTs and other participants could have the chance to better understand their roles in water-based situations and further improve their preparedness.”


Armstrong Ambulance Hosts Stop the Bleed Training Program

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Armstrong Ambulance Service Inc. is pleased to announce that members of its team shared their insight into the field of emergency medicine with a group of students at a Stop the Bleed training event late last month.

Armstrong Ambulance hosted the free hemorrhage control and first aid training in recognition of National EMS week on Thursday, May 23 at the Armstrong Ambulance Service ambulance bay on Mystic Street. A group of 15 students from Medford Vocational Technical High School’s Health Assisting program attended the event.

Armstrong tactical paramedics assigned to the NEMLEC SWAT Team led the training, during which students took part in hands-on exercises. Students practiced stopping a bleed by wrapping tourniquets on rubber tubes that sprayed water until they were properly tied off, allowing students to witness first hand whether their technique was correct and effective. During the training, students also reviewed proper CPR, AED and choke save techniques on infant and adult mannequins, and were shown by a paramedic how to properly intubate a patient.

“The students that attended this training were attentive, eager to learn and excited about the field of emergency medical services,” said Armstrong Chief Business Officer Meredith Lambroff. “It was exciting for our team to teach them these lifesaving procedures and provide some insight into the careers available in the field of EMS.”

In addition to the training, students learned about EMS careers from paramedics during a meet and greet. The highlight of the day, however, was when students met Willie Blue, Armstrong’s new support puppy.

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Armstrong Ambulance to Host Drop In “Stop the Bleed” Training

Paramedics like Dan Cardona and Gwen Bibby, along with Willie, will be on scene for the Stop the Bleed event.

Paramedics like Dan Cardona and Gwen Bibby, along with Willie, will be on scene for the Stop the Bleed event.

As part of National EMS Week, Armstrong Ambulance Service will be conducting free hemorrhage control and first aid training for interested members of the public.

WHEN:
Thursday, May 23, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

WHERE:
Armstrong Ambulance Service in the ambulance bay (rear of the building), 87 Mystic St., Arlington

WHAT:
National EMS Week runs from May 19-25 and recognizes EMTs/paramedics who provide lifesaving services everyday. Armstrong tactical paramedics assigned to the NEMLEC SWAT Team will conduct the hands-on Stop the Bleed training, which takes about 10 minutes.

Through simple techniques, any adult or teenager can drop in and learn how to save a life in critical situations with bleeding patients. Refreshments will be provided along with a meet and greet with paramedics and Willie Blue, the Armstrong support puppy. Members of the public can sign up by emailing education@armstrongambulance.com or can just drop in anytime between 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

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Armstrong Ambulance Paramedic Helps Girl Scouts Earn First Aid Badges

Armstrong Paramedic Stephanie Crayton (center) met with her neighbor’s Girl Scouts troop in order to help them earn their first aid badges.

Armstrong Paramedic Stephanie Crayton (center) met with her neighbor’s Girl Scouts troop in order to help them earn their first aid badges.

 

An Armstrong Ambulance paramedic recently shared her expertise in emergency medicine in order to help a group of Girl Scouts earn their first aid badge.

Paramedic Stephanie Crayton worked with her neighbor, Dor, and her fellow scouts to share knowledge about the types of injuries and ailments she and her colleagues at Armstrong encounter. In doing so, she helped the girls fulfill one of the core requirements to earn their first aid badges — talking face to face with a first responder.

The scouts are all fourth graders from Cambridge.

Crayton told the girls about her experiences as both a paramedic for Armstrong and as a firefighter with the Cambridge Fire Department, as well as how ambulances and fire departments collaborate to help people in need.

Crayton covered a variety of topics with the scouts, discussing some common types of emergencies and what to do when they arise. They addressed choking, nose bleeds, allergies and anaphylaxis (and the difference between the two), burns, bone fractures and the proper recovery position for someone who is breathing but unconscious.

The scouts also asked Crayton about a wide array of scenarios, including what to do if someone’s house is burning, they’re choking and have a nose bleed all at the same time.

“I was so glad they asked me to help,” Crayton said. “The girls were great listeners and had a lot of fantastic questions about the work we do as paramedics, and I’m proud of the work they put into earning their badges.”


Armstrong Ambulance Therapy Dog Visits Arlington Senior Center

Image-1Armstrong Ambulance took its new therapy dog on its first community outing last week.

On Thursday, April 18, Armstrong’s chocolate lab, Willie Blue Armstrong, paid a visit to the Arlington Senior Center. He was accompanied by Armstrong HR Director (and Willie’s trainer) Beth Keegan, Provider Relations and Marketing Representative Katherine Aker and Chief Business Officer Meredith Lambroff.

Following an invitation by senior center staff, the outing became Willie’s first official trip into the community since he joined Armstrong earlier this year. During his visit, members of the Armstrong team filled attendees in on Willie’s background and training.

They also shared some inside stories about Willie’s life at Armstrong’s Arlington base, including his devilish side where he once sneaked off with a colleague’s lunch. The group chuckled at the “Silly Willie” stories and had smiles from ear to ear.

“The group asked a lot of questions, shared stories about their own pets and took pictures with Willie,” Lambroff said. “We all left feeling happier. It was a great day, and we’re looking forward to going back to visit as well as having Willie brighten up many more lives.”

Willie’s visit was chronicled on his Instagram account, which features regular updates on his day-to-day life. To see Willie’s Instagram page, click https://www.instagram.com/williebluearmstrong/.

*Click https://vimeo.com/331462468 and  https://vimeo.com/331462478 for videos of Willie’s visit to the senior center*

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Armstrong Ambulance Celebrates Easter in Brighton

Armstrong EMT Jennifer Bowman handed out eggs at the Gerry McCarthy Community Egg Hunt.

Armstrong EMT Jennifer Bowman handed out eggs at the Gerry McCarthy Community Egg Hunt.

Armstrong Ambulance joined the community in an Easter celebration over the weekend in Brighton.

Armstrong opened the doors to one of its ambulances to the public on Saturday, April 20, at the 36th annual Gerry McCarthy Community Egg Hunt at the Sisters of St. Joseph in Boston.

At the event, hundreds of area kids aged 2-10 gathered to collect Easter eggs and explore an ambulance, as well as vehicles from the Boston Police and Fire Departments.

EMTs Remy Cortorreal and Jennifer Bowman handed out eggs and candy to children in attendance, and also welcomed them into the ambulance, where they used stethoscopes to listen to their hearts and lungs.

Armstrong EMT Remy Cortorreal checks a child's heart and lungs during the touch-a-truck portion of an Easter egg hunt in Brighton.

Armstrong EMT Remy Cortorreal checks a child’s heart and lungs during the touch-a-truck portion of an Easter egg hunt in Brighton.


Armstrong Ambulance Administers CPR Lessons at Recovery Centers of America

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Armstrong Ambulance is pleased to join Recovery Centers of America to provide hands-only CPR lessons to RCA patients. Beginning last month, Armstrong staff are visiting RCA’s Danvers location and working with patients suffering from addiction to teach them how to perform lifesaving CPR prior to being discharged from treatment.

The lessons, which were organized and are taught by Armstrong Educational Coordinator Larry LeDoux, provide RCA patients with a basic understanding of how to perform CPR, including the proper technique and rhythm to ensure the best chances at success. LeDoux teaches students the steps, including calling 911 first and foremost, and then administering chest compressions to the beat of a familiar song with an appropriate amount of beats per minute. Some examples include “Staying Alive” by the Bee Gees or “Crazy in Love” by Beyonce.
“These lessons provide RCA’s patients with a valuable skill that they may some day need to help a loved one or friend in need,” LeDoux said. “This is something tangible and practical that patients can be proud of upon being discharged.”

According to the American Heart Association, approximately 90 percent of those who undergo sudden cardiac arrest outside of a hospital die. If performed immediately, CPR can double or triple a victim’s chances of survival.

“During the drug and alcohol epidemic that exists today, so many of our patients are in situations where friends and others around them are overdosing and dying,” Danvers Recovery Centers of America CEO Laura Ames said. “Narcan is not always available and this CPR training by Armstrong Ambulance provides our patients with a valuable lifesaving skill to help others suffering from an addiction who are in need of help.”


Armstrong Ambulance Takes Part in Department of Children and Families College Fair

Armstrong Ambulance representatives attended a college fair held by the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families Wednesday.

Armstrong Ambulance representatives attended a college fair held by the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families Wednesday.

 

Armstrong Ambulance representatives attended a college fair held by the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families Wednesday.

The Wednesday, April 17 fair was held at the Doubletree Hotel in Westborough. Students and foster parents attended the fair to meet with schools and organizations and learn about academic and career opportunities for young people following high school.

Last year, almost every public college in the state was represented at the fair, among other post-secondary groups and private colleges.

Armstrong Ambulance Basic Life Support Training Coordinator Larry LeDoux and HR Generalist Michael McCusker attended the fair, where they informed teens about the available paths to pursue a career in emergency services. They spoke with students about the opportunities and education available to become chair car driver, EMT, or paramedic.

“Working in emergency services is incredibly rewarding, and crucial for the vitality and safety of every community,” McCusker said. “It was a great opportunity for us to share that with students, and inform them about the opportunities and programs available to them to pursue a career in this field, helping people and making a difference every day.”


STEMI Boot Camp

 

From left: Armstrong Ambulance CEO Rich Raymond (holding Willie), St. Elizabeth's EMS Manager Jeff Scafidi, Dr. Sush Prusty and Armstrong Director of Clinical Integration Ben Podsiadlo.

From left: Armstrong Ambulance CEO Rich Raymond (holding Willie), St. Elizabeth’s EMS Manager Jeff Scafidi, Dr. Sush Prusty and Armstrong Director of Clinical Integration Ben Podsiadlo.

Several members of the Armstrong Ambulance team attended a recent heart health event in Boston, where one member presented to fellow attendees and another was presented with an award.

The ST-Elevation Myocardial Infarction (STEMI) Boot Camp, held Saturday, March 23, at St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center in Boston featured an in-depth look at the issues surrounding STEMI, which is one of the most severe forms of heart attack.

The Boot Camp was led by Dr. Sush Prusty, and included a presentation by Armstrong Director of Clinical Integration Ben Podsiadlo. During his talk, Podsiadlo discussed the three core concepts of the Boot Camp, including the checklist mindset, EKG, and clinical pattern recognition and team debriefing when managing patients with STEMI.

The event emphasized the key pillars of addressing these forms of heart attacks, and included representatives from the EMS, nursing and allied health professions.

“This bootcamp addressed a critical health issue that our first responders, as well as emergency medical practitioners need to be prepared to collaborate on in order to save patient lives,” Armstrong CEO Rich Raymond said. “Ben has helped Armstrong to emerge as a leader on this issue, and I was glad to see him engage with so many of our peers to both learn from them and share his knowledge.”

Podsiadlo and Raymond were joined at the Boot Camp by Armstrong’s resident therapy dog, Willie Blue Armstrong, who was honored by the event organizers as the Mascot of the Year.