LEE COUNTY, Fla.- The Golisano Children's Hospital of Southwest Florida has a new addition to it's team. A pediatric friendly ambulance was unveiled, allowing children to receive quality care while on the road.
"It is fantastic to see the patient light up when they go inside."
It's best described as an intensive care unit on wheels.
Inside this ambulance, the set-up is quite unlike your typical ambulance.
"They are afraid to get on the stretcher and go inside, but once they are in there, you see them release and find comfort in there," said registered nurse Niki Shimko.
The medical equipment is virtually hidden, and bright colors, a beach theme and a flat screen t.v. plays movies, that over powers a dark EMS ambulance.
"Anytime there is a child or a neonatal, we want to be the ones to go out and get them because we have the specialty and education," said registered nurse Marybeth Gardner.
The pediatric friendly ambulance is used to transport children from hospital to hospital. Care for the children can begin the second these ambulance doors are closed.
"We don't go out to the scene to pick up the children, we go to an ER, we want to make that smooth as possible."
A system called tele-medicine will be soon be installed.
It will allow for a doctor to be by the child's side via this t.v. while they are in transport.
"It gives the opportunity to have medical control inside of the ambulance, just as a patient was already at the hospital or in the room," said Lead Paramedic James Hammond.
The ambulance is a generous donation from San-Cap Cares.
In total, $380,000 was raised to get this ambulance for the children of the Golisano Children's Hospital.
"The PICU team does about 100 kids a month, the NICU team does a little less because of availability, but that's a lot of children we are bringing into our system," said Gardner.
All paramedics and EMT's that work on the children's ambulance come from fire and ems systems in Collier and Lee County.