JACKSON, Miss. — The University of Mississippi Medical Center is getting $2 million for a pilot project to train rural first responders to use a statewide communications system to get long-distance help for patients.

Firefighters and law enforcement workers usually are the first to see accident or storm victims, Dr. Damon Darsey, medical director for the Mississippi Center for Emergency Services, said in a news release.

“The program will allow these people to get training on how to collect data and communicate findings early in the process — to provide the best care possible, but also communicate that care downstream so that whatever hospital the patient goes to will have the best information possible,” he said.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security is providing the grant for the Rural Emergency Medical Communications Demonstration Project. It’s part of the medical center’s First Hands project.

“This training will help get all of the potential medical care providers on the same page of communication,” said Dr. Alan Jones.

“It also helps us have a handle on what we are dealing with so that if we need to push resources, or to talk a responder through some intervention or steps that can help the patient, then at least we’re communicating at the most proximal point,” he said.

VIAThe Associated Press
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