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GBFD to get additional live-saving tools
Devices critical in emergencies
city council pic
Great Bend Fire Chief Luke McCormick makes a presentation to the City Council Monday night about purchasing new defibrillators and a chest-compression device for the department. The purchases were approved. - photo by DALE HOGG Great Bend Tribune

Ensuring a higher level of care in emergency situations, the Great Bend City Council Monday night OKed the purchase of potentially life-saving devices for the Great Bend Fire Department.

The council approved the purchase of four X Series monitors/defibrillators from ZOLL Medical at a cost $120,212.18, and the purchase of the LUCAS 3.1 Chest Compression System from Stryker for $15,273.22.

“For the past three years, we’ve budgeted $45,000 per year to replace our defibrillator monitors,” Fire Chief Luke McCormick said. The idea was to replace the current monitors.

The ones in service now were bought in 2010, he said. “Monitors have about a five to seven year life expectancy. We’ve exceeded the life of the units we have now.”

So over the past several months, a committee comprised of firefighters, captains and battalion chiefs from each shift researched options to replace the department’s existing cardiac monitors, McCormick said. “The cardiac monitor is used on all most every patient as a diagnostic tool and, at times, for invasive procedures.” 

During the research phase, they viewed and tested units from ZOLL and Stryker. “The committee agreed that either monitor would meet our needs,” the chief said. 

They requested bids from both. Stryker submitted a bid for $127,568.16 and ZOLL submitted a bid for $120,212.18.

A big difference in the price was the trade-in Zoll offered, McCormick said. Otherwise, it was an apples-to-apples comparison.

This is an automated external defibrillator and is compliant with current American Heart Association standards. It offers hands-free manual defibrillation.

The vendor will provide three days of training to ensure adequate education of all personnel at the expense of the company.

As for the chest compression system, in May of 2019, the Fire Department with assistance from the Kansas Revolving and Assistance Fund grant through the Kansas Board of Emergency Medical Services was able to purchase one LUCAS Chest Compression System, McCormick said. Currently the department is carrying the device in the battalion chiefs vehicle as it responds to most unresponsive patients. 

“However, the department has found this devise to be very effective in administering chest compression and has had success using it,” he said. So, the department is recommending carrying the device on each first-out Ambulance.

“There are some limitations,” he said of the units. They can only be used on adults, and sometimes they are ineffective on obese patients.

Also approved was the purchase of the desk-top charger at a cost of about $1,012.70. This will allow the devise to be carried in vehicles other than an ambulance. 

Previously, they had to take the unit out of service to charge.

But, he said the department had budgeted $135,000 for the monitors. The savings from this purchase along with about $400 taken out of the GBFD budget will cover the cost.

Great Bend City Council meeting at a glance

Here is a quick look at what the Great Bend City Council did Monday night:

• Approved the purchase of a model year 2020 dump truck for the Street Department at a cost of $141,895 from Midwest Truck Equipment. This includes a stainless steel dump body.

Some on the council questioned buying new truck instead of seeking out used one. City officials said that is something the do take into consideration, it just wasn’t an option this time around.

The city’s dump trucks double as snow plows. The new truck’s stainless steel bed will hold up to the brine the city will start to use to pre-treat streets this winter, Public Works Director Simon Wiley said.

It has a double axle, which may seem like overkill, but Wiley said with the weight of the spreader and materials needed for brine application, that extra strength will be needed.

The cost of the truck is in the Street Department’s budget. It set aside a total of around $150,000 over the past three years for the purchase.

• Approved the purchase of four X Series monitors/defibrillators from ZOLL Medical at a cost $120,212.18 for the Great Bend Fire Department.

• Approved the purchase of the LUCAS 3.1 Chest Compression System for $15,273.22 from Stryker for the GBFD.

• Approved a door-to-door license for Magna Dry out of Great Bend.

• Approved the closure of Lakin Avenue between Main and Kansas from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 17, for the Crosswinds of Kansas Blessed Bike Rally.

• Approved the 2019 Standard Traffic Ordinance and 2019 Uniform Public Offense Code Ordinance. The Kansas League of Municipalities prepares these annually and this is an annual action by the council. The comply with the State of Kansas changes to its criminal code and reflects changes made by the Kansas Legislature during its most recent session.

• Heard a report from City Administrator Kendal Francis. He focused on on-going street repair projects.

• Heard an economic development report from Great Bend Chamber of Commerce and Economic Development President/CEO Jan Peters. She focused on-going business recruitment efforts.

• Approved abatements at: 821 Heizer, Motor Vehicle Nuisance, owned by Adelita Pantoja; and 1618 Morphy, Accumulation of Trash/Refuse, owned by Stacey Farris.