In effort to reinforce The Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) to act as a first responder to both fire alarms and other medical emergency calls, a new strategy is being put in place. A bill proposed by house leader’s calls for fire stations to have trained paramedics added on duty at all times to be a requirement. The BFP has backed the approval of this House Bill, authored by Rep. Luis Campus Jr.

The House Bill was intended to make the BFP’s staff better trained and equipped when responding to accidents, medical emergencies calls, or even terror attacks. The proposed bill would offer selective training for the nation’s next generation of firefighters as certified paramedics or emergency medical technicians (EMTs).

“We support the posting of at least three uniformed BFP officers who are certified EMTs in every fire station, with at least one on duty per eight-hour shift,” said Chief Supt. Bañago, BFP chief, during a hearing on the house bill (HB) 5338. Bañago was also persistent on having refresher courses for BFP’s officers who are trained as EMTs.

The HB5338 would not only require selective EMT training for firefighters, but would also require BFP officers to acquire the necessary skills and accreditation as certified first responders (CFR).

EMTs, whom are trained in advanced pre-hospital care services, are essential for making the BFP a first responder for any casualty or medical emergency. They have a wide range of services they can perform including: endotracheal intubations, the use of medical devices, administer medications orally and intravenously, and even run blood transfusions.

The bill will not only help firefighters and the BFP but also the nation’s public emergency services. The proposed bill will help save lives and help better train firefights and fire stations for the best quality care during those medical calls. In addition, firetrucks will be equipped with the necessary tools to deal with non-fire emergencies.

Currently, BFP officers are accrued with minimal training in elementary first aid and cardiovascular resuscitation which makes it difficult to treat or respond to victims of vehicle or non0finre emergencies.

In a recent case, a driver was killed during an accident that involved a cement mixer crushing a family car. The rest of the family was heavily injured. It took the rescuers nearly two hours to help pull the victims out of the car, into an ambulance, and make their way to the hospital because they lacked the appropriate equipment.

Source: Manila Bulletin