Obese folks living within the Calgary region of O’Canada now have access to an ambulance that is designed for patients up to 1000 lbs (450 kg) in weight. According to the article, obesity is not only a problem in Canada, but in the rest of North America as well. Are they hinting at Estados Unidos Mexicanos?
The upgrades to the ambulance include a specially designed air mattress that is inflated beneath the patient, making transfer to a widened stretcher easier and safer. A remote lift system then gently raises the stretcher into the ambulance.
Chad Campbell, a Calgary man who weighs more than 560 pounds, said it used to take four firemen and two paramedics to transport him to hospital.
“I think it will be a step in the right direction because now with obesity not just in Canada but in North America as a whole, the standard ambulance or EMS procedures aren’t really geared to handle situations like that.”
Paul Lapointe, a public education officer with EMS, said the ambulance, refitted at a cost of $30,000, should cut down injuries among paramedics transferring obese patients.
“Often when a paramedic is lifting up a patient, you want to use your legs, but your back is at a bit of a risk. Other than your back you can injure a leg or an arm depending on how you’re moving them, so there is always a risk there.”
The ambulance will be on call for people living within the Calgary Health Region, Theirren said.