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Supporting EMS Safety Against Assaults: An Albuquerque Ambulance Innovation

In a field where violent encounters are all too common, one individual's commitment to supporting EMS providers has been recognized. Zachary Potts, Clinical Quality Commander at Albuquerque Ambulance Services, has taken on the challenge of addressing underreported assaults against EMS personnel. His remarkable contributions have not only increased the accuracy of reporting but also revolutionized the way support is provided to these brave individuals who serve the community.

Supporting EMS Safety Against Assaults: An Albuquerque Ambulance InnovationZachary Potts, Clinical Quality Commander at Albuquerque Ambulance Services.

Assaults on EMS providers have long been a problem in the industry, with many incidents going unreported or unnoticed. Recognizing the gravity of the situation, Albuquerque Ambulance partnered with the Albuquerque Fire Department and Bernalillo County Fire Department to implement a system that would better understand the frequency and nature of these events. By configuring custom questions in the ImageTrend Elite™ ePCR software, Zachary enabled EMS providers to report assaults more efficiently, removing any barriers that had hindered the reporting process. As a result, the number of reported EMS assault incidents surged, providing the organization with invaluable data.

This powerful dataset has allowed Albuquerque Ambulance to engage in informed discussions with community leaders, armed with real numbers that shed light on the alarming frequency of EMS assaults. The collected data allows for correlations between MPDS codes, call times, and geographic locations, enabling a deeper understanding of the circumstances in which these assaults occur. This knowledge has laid the groundwork for the development of targeted strategies to mitigate the risk faced by EMS personnel and enhance their safety.

However, Zachary's contributions go far beyond data collection and analysis. Utilizing ImageTrend Continuum® for active data monitoring, he created a workflow to ensure immediate support for EMS providers who experience assaults. By implementing an alert system that notifies the on-duty Commander whenever an EMS assault is reported, Zachary facilitates swift action and intervention. This innovative feature allows Commanders to gain immediate visibility into the situation, empowering them to connect with the affected employees, offer support, and guide them through the necessary steps, such as filing police reports or injury reports. Additionally, it enables Commanders to provide much-needed debriefing opportunities and connect employees with psychological services and support, thus prioritizing their overall well-being.

Supporting EMS Safety Against Assaults: An Albuquerque Ambulance InnovationZachary Potts evaluating data to help address underreported assaults.

Zachary's commitment to the well-being and support of Albuquerque Ambulance's employees during these incredibly stressful events is exemplary. His dedication to revolutionizing the reporting and support systems surrounding EMS assaults has yielded transformative results, setting new standards in the field. The impact of his innovations has significantly improved the work lives of EMS providers, fostering a culture of care and safety within the organization.

The nomination of Zachary for the Hooley Award is a testament to the profound impact he has had on the EMS community. His tireless efforts to address the issue of underreported EMS assaults and provide comprehensive support to those affected have earned him the admiration and respect of his colleagues.

As the EMS field continues to grapple with the challenges of violence against its providers, Zachary's innovative solutions serve as a beacon of hope and inspiration. His work not only transforms the way we perceive and respond to EMS assaults but also paves the way for a safer future for all those who selflessly serve our communities.

Zachary Potts was a recipient of the 2023 ImageTrend Hooley Awards in the Service category. The Hooley Awards recognize innovators and thought leaders, honoring their involvement, creativity, and passion. They were founded to acknowledge their contributions to innovation and excellence. The Hooley Award finalists were celebrated, and the winners were announced during the 15th annual ImageTrend Connect Conference.

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