By: Keon Karimabady, PR Officer, 2014-2015
Early this past October, as we were just beginning to settle into the new semester, VCEMS sat down with the Student Health Advisory and the American Red Cross to coordinate the first blood drive of the academic year. As a team composed of both blood drive veterans and newcomers, our ambitions were high: the bar was set at 81 units. In addition to tabling in the College Center and nonchalantly hanging up posters in the residence halls, VCEMS was on standby the day of the drive to escort and provide refreshments for donors. The event was held from 11:30 to 5:30 in the Villard Room and the turnout was great! We had a substantial number of walk-ins and even had some double red cell donations (two units of red blood cells minus the plasma and platelets which are returned to the donor). Although the 81 unit goal was met it wasn’t the units of blood that made the drive successful, it was the coming together of the community for the selfless purpose of contributing to something larger than themselves. There is another blood drive, in collaboration with the Hudson Valley Blood Services, scheduled for next semester in the spring. For more information regarding the different types of donations or anything else Red Cross related head over to their website: http://www.redcrossblood.org/.
By: Kate Pula, Captain, 2014-2105
Halloween night is always a big night for the campus, and VCEMS have to be prepared to take care of students who need help. On a normal night we only have one crew on, consisting of three members. But for Halloween we have additional crews sign on during Halloween event hours. We have four total crews during the party, each with three members. We are stationed in the Faculty Commons on the first floor, so we are nearby the party, but are also able to respond to the rest of campus. We have a Mobile Life ambulance crew on standby, ready to transport any of our patients to the hospital, so we do not have to tax the local Arlington Fire Department ambulances.
The night starts with all the members getting their gear and signing on. We then wait for the calls to start, spending our time watching Halloween movies and enjoying Halloween candy. As well as having pizza provided by the Senior Class Council. Once the calls start the night can get pretty busy, but thankfully we work very closely with the Campus Response Center and have a member act as a specific VCEMS dispatcher to make sure all patients are being attended to.
Overall Halloween 2014 went as expected and had similar call volume compared to previous years. Most notably the communications and efficiency this year were a huge improvement. Previous years have been good overall in these categories, but this year ran like a well-oiled machine. Most importantly individuals called when they needed help and all of our patients were well cared for. The EMS crews did a great job during a busy night, but also had a fun Halloween.