The Bedford, N.H., Police Department Communications Center is a full-service public safety answering point (PSAP), providing communications services for police, fire and emergency medical service.
Since the center’s installation in 1993, the community and the region have expanded, with Bedford serving as the terminus of the main east/west corridor into Manchester. Annual calls for service have increased to more than 29,000.
Using existing capital improvement project funding and a state grant, the communications center was overhauled in 2013 to accommodate increased calls for service and to function as a backup PSAP for surrounding communities. The state-of-the-art facility features the latest in PSAP accommodations, technology and infrastructure to handle the 300 percent increase in calls with no additional staffing.
Nine large, red barrels are saving lives in Livingston County. These “Big Red Barrels” are part of a drug take-back program started by the Livingston County Community Alliance, a grassroots anti-drug coalition. The effort came in response to rising prescription drug abuse rates and heroin deaths within the county. The barrels accept all excess medications, free of charge, with a “no questions asked” policy. Since the program’s inception in 2011, the Big Red Barrels have collected nearly a ton of medication. The project has been replicated in 11 counties throughout Michigan and has been a model program for other drug take-back initiatives.
Breezy Point, a city of 2,500 residents, sees that number soar to more than 10,000 during the tourist season. However, the city’s ambulances were stationed 20 minutes away. To provide quicker care, the city entered into a partnership with North Memorial Ambulance Service.
The city employs police officers who are also trained as paramedics, while North Memorial provides equipment and medical control. The skills provided by these officers include administering several medications, intravenous therapy, endotracheal intubation, as well as cardiac monitoring and defibrillation. When a call is received, police paramedics are dispatched and are able to begin advanced life support procedures within minutes.
This program saves lives as well as costs. With most equipment and medications provided by North Memorial, the costs incurred by the city are minimal. The city pays on average $14,000 annually to support the program.
The San Diego Department of Child Support Services (DCSS) developed the Legal Paperless System (LPS) to eliminate the need for paper litigation files used in court matters. LPS is the first child support paperless application in California to fully integrate all external agency calendaring systems and the department’s customer queue management system into a workflow solution. Attorneys can take a tablet computer that contains all documents and information they need to successfully resolve a court matter. Documents can be projected in the courtroom, if needed. LPS reduces paper usage, and increases efficiency of child support staff involved in the court hearing process. Nearly 460,000 pieces of paper and approximately 3,400 hours of staff case preparation are saved annually. Additionally, LPS improved customer service by reducing day-of-court wait times by an average of 10 minutes.
Cardiac Arrest victims have a better chance of survival thanks to new, analytics-driven recommendations from Wake County Emergency Medical Services. Analytics provider SAS analyzed data on responses to cardiac arrest calls from 2005 through 2012, including time spent administering CPR, and patient outcomes. As a result of the analyses, Wake County EMS has changed its approach from the old industry standard of 25 minutes of CPR.
In certain cases, responders may continue resuscitation efforts for up to an hour or more without worrying that a survivor has a higher chance of ending up with significant brain damage. Analysis indicates that stopping CPR efforts early may miss some patients who could survive neurologically intact. Future research will evaluate how to determine which patients may benefit from longer resuscitation efforts.
Originally started by the Winter Springs Police Department in 2008 with grant funding, the “Lock It or Lose It” crime prevention campaign was put in place with the intent of reducing the number of property crimes where the articles stolen were taken from unlocked motor vehicles.
These crimes were happening in areas ranging from local parks to public parking lots and individual residential driveways. Chief Kevin Brunelle and his officers initially set out on foot in neighborhoods to educate as many members of the public as they could on the risks associated with leaving valuables unsecured in their automobiles.
Officers handed out flyers and spoke with hundreds of residents. It worked. In the following years, thefts from motor vehicles dropped over 23 percent.
But the department isn’t done yet. The “Lock It or Lose It” program has grown with the use of police volunteers and patrol officers continuing to hand out brochures.
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