Aibonito– The governor, Pedro Rafael Pierluisi Urrutia, together with the secretary of the Department of Public Security (DSP), Alexis Torres, and the commissioner of the Medical Emergency Corps Bureau, Dr. José Colón Grau, announced on Thursday the delivery of 18 ambulances to different regions around the island.
“In an emergency, the government’s response must be immediate and effective, because that is where we can make a difference and save lives. Acting diligently requires our first responders to have the equipment they require. This delivery of 18 ambulances is the beginning of what our administration wants to continue multiplying, that is why we will be working and identifying resources to be able to continue providing the necessary tools to attend to emergencies, ”the governor said at a press conference.
The ambulances were delivered in the parking lot next to the Aibonito Police Headquarters, to be distributed around the island.
They were acquired at the end of last year, and in January they received the necessary equipment and certifications to be able to start operating.
For his part, the secretary of the DSP indicated that, “an emergency cannot wait. That’s why we work every day to find resources, equipment and tools that help our people save lives. We will continue working as a team with the negotiated companies to be able to carry out our work and with Puerto Rico ”.
Colón Grau said that, according to the transition of the government, the response times of the Bureau hovered around an average of 27 minutes.
With adjustments that were made in a short time, response times have been reduced by between 15 and 18 minutes.
With these ambulances, you are expected to help meet the goal of the first 100 days, which is to reduce the time to 10 minutes.
“We want to be diligent and fulfill our mission of providing first aid services and being able to save lives. These ambulances will help us to reduce the response time and thus be able to provide the services that patients need ”, added the Commissioner of Medical Emergencies.
Dr. Colón Grau highlighted that these vehicles were acquired at the end of last year with an investment of 2,177,840.70 dollars from the 9-1-1 Emergency System Bureau for the distribution of funds for calls attended by Medical Emergencies during 2018 .
Once he arrived at the Bureau in January, he took care of issuing the certificates, tags, plates and other necessary steps so that they could go out to provide services, in addition to equipping them.
He stressed that the ambulances have specialized teams of cardiac monitors for the management of adult, pediatric and neonatal patients, in addition to having an air filter system for greater safety of employees and patients during the COVID-19 emergency.
These Ford Transit vehicles have a special stretcher for trauma patients, an evacuation chair that supports 500 pounds, and safety equipment to transport minors on the stretcher. In addition to the corresponding equipment of a Type III ambulance, now in January they were equipped with a digital communications radio, a geographic tracking system and the permission of use from the Transportation Bureau, and other services.
The ambulances are being delivered in: 3 Arecibo region (Arecibo, Camuy, Lares); 3 Carolina region (Isla Verde, Canóvanas, Trujillo Alto); 3 Ponce region (Jayuya, Adjuntas, Juana Díaz); 3 Mayagüez region (Cabo Rojo, Las Marías, Sabana Grande); 1 Aguadilla region (Isabela); 2 Caguas region (Aguas Buenas, Aibonito); 2 Humacao region (Juncos, Humacao); and 1 Fajardo region (Luquillo).
The mayor of Aibonito, William “Willie” Alicea Pérez, appreciated that the delivery began in his municipality.
“It is a great honor that they chose our town, here in the mountains, to deliver the essential work tool of the comrades of all the bases that today receive them, including the base of our town of Aibonito.
“During times of crisis, it is the Medical Emergencies Corps that is in charge of working and providing protection to citizens who need it, seven days a week, 24 hours a day. I hope that this will help them to continue executing such an important task in the face of the challenges of a pandemic, guaranteeing an indispensable service for the benefit of all ”, said Alicea Pérez.