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Paul Davis

MED-ACT: Don’t hesitate to call 911 in a medical emergency

Johnson County MED-ACT has seen a marked decrease in calls about heart attacks, cardiac arrest and strokes, and experts worry that people are not calling for help or waiting longer to call for help because they fear catching coronavirus (COVID-19) in ambulances and at hospitals.

“In conversations with our emergency department partners, they have also seen a decrease in those types of visits,” said Paul Davis, director and chief of Emergency Medical Services.

Davis wants the public to know that MED-ACT is taking precautions to prevent the spread of the virus.

“There is no need to fear infection,” Davis said. “Every precaution has been taken to protect our EMS staff, fire department, first responders, hospital workers, and most importantly, there are processes in place to protect our patients through the use of personal protective equipment.”

MED-ACT decontaminates the ambulances after every patient, and MED-ACT puts their vehicles through a sterilization process about twice a week, Davis said.

If you’re experiencing the signs or symptoms of heart or stroke, that’s the time to call 911, he said.

“The longer we wait, the more damage there is to the heart muscle or the brain,” he cautioned. “The sooner, the better.”

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