If you were looking for your daily dose of stupid politics for the day this story might be right up your alley. The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control has launched an investigation into an incident where a then 16 year old administered CPR in an ambulance. This investigation was prompted by a city councilman with an issue with it.
Surfside Beach (SC) City Councilman Randle Stevens in a Facebook post tried to blast the Surfside Beach Fire Department for allowing a 16 year old participate in a cardiac arrest call on a local ambulance which called for the young EMT to perform CPR. The Councilman claims the incident was kept under wraps and kept from the city council by officers of the fire department. His claims obviously ignore the entire premise of the federal law of HIPAA where it clearly states the city council would have no right to such information or reason to have it. Mr. Stevens goes on in his rant to complain about how the 16 year old served as a second EMT on an ambulance with a cleared primary provider during the transport and that the patient did not survive the call. Which as we all know is a frequent happening in CPR.
Since the investigation began Chief Anthony Fox has defended his department and members and has since been relieved of his duties as the town’s fire chief as of March 27, 2015. Chief Fox was neither on scene nor a part of the incident in question.
Reports say the DHEC hopes to conclude the investigation in a couple of weeks.
One would expect it won’t yield any results however. EMT’s often serve at 16 and 17 years of age as junior members and ride-along members. This is nothing new and neither is a certified CPR provider and state certified EMT providing competent patient care; regardless of age. In this publication’s opinion this is yet another stupid politician looking for 15 minutes of fame and one who has no idea how EMS or Fire works. The end result? Mr. Stevens has embarrassed himself, his community, and has shown his ignorance of public safety.
This is the same City Councilman who has several problems with the law in recent years. In 2012 he was escorted out of a bank for arguing with a bank teller. In 2016 he was hit with allegations of sexual harassment. The outcomes of both claims are unknown at this time.