Paramedics Get a Break with New Chest Compression Device - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

Paramedics Get a Break with New Chest Compression Device

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A new piece of equipment is helping the Charlottesville-Albemarle Rescue Squad save lives.

The device is called LUCAS, and it can give paramedics a break and do chest compressions for them. The rescue squad just got it up and running two weeks ago and has already used it three times.

The device delivers automated compressions to jumpstart a pulse, and can be put on a patient in less than 30 seconds. It also cuts down the amount of people needed to do chest compressions.

In the past, five or six paramedics would be needed to help with the compressions, but now more of them can focus on other patient needs.

"One thing that we find in this line of business is when we're working a cardiac arrest patient, within the first few minutes of doing chest compressions providers tire out. And so the machine will not tire out because it's providing continuous compressions and that's something that a provider can't do," said Anthony Judkins of the Charlottesville-Albemarle Rescue Squad.

LUCAS is also a huge help when transporting a patient to the hospital. Doing chest compressions in the back of the ambulance can be dangerous and unstable, but the new device allows paramedics to be safely seated when using it.

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