Advanced Practice Providers in the Field: Implementation of the Los Angeles Fire Department Advanced Provider Response Unit

Stephen Sanko, Saman Kashani, Terrance Ito, Aaron Guggenheim, Shangnon Fei, Marc Eckstein
Prehospital Emergency Care 2019 December 11, : 1-11
Background: To address the growing number of low-acuity patients in the 911-EMS system, the Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD) launched a pilot program placing an Advanced Provider Response Unit (APRU) in the field so that a prehospital nurse practitioner (NP) could offer patients treatment/release on scene, alternative destination transport, and linkage with social services. Objective: To describe the initial 18-month experience implementing this new APRU. Methods: This is a retrospective, descriptive review of all APRU-attended patients from January 2016 to June 2017. The APRU was an ambulance staffed by an NP and a firefighter/paramedic, equipped with basic point-of-care testing capability, and linked to incidents by either being summoned by on-scene first responders or by monitoring EMS radio traffic. Descriptive statistics were used and outcome measures included counts of clients attended, treat/release rates, impact on total time in service for other LAFD resources, patient need for subsequent re-use of 911 and self-reported experience of care. Results: During its first 18 months in service, the APRU attended 812 patients, including 792 911-patient incidents. 400 of these 911-patients (50.5%) were treated and released on scene or medically cleared and transported to an alternative site for specialty care. This included 76 patients with primary psychiatric complaints who were medically-cleared and transported directly to a mental health urgent care center. An additional 18 high utilizers of 911 were attended by the APRU and connected with a social work organization, and 12 of 18 (66.7%) decreased their use of EMS in the 90-days following APRU evaluation and referral. Of the 400 911-patients that did not go to the emergency department (ED), 26 (6.5%) re-contacted 911 within 3 days: all were transported to the ED with normal vital signs and without prehospital intervention, and all were ultimately discharged home from the ED. As a result of APRU intervention, 458 other LAFD field resources were quickly placed back in service and made available for the next time-critical call. Conclusions: Advanced practice providers such as nurse practitioners can be incorporated into the prehospital setting to address a growing subset of 911-patients whose needs can be met outside of the ED.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"