S.D. Paramedic NEWS-ONLINE

Representing both City and County Paramedics

updated 01-20-97


by Lisa F. Howell, EMT-P

The Quality Assurance Network (QA Net) started back in 1989 as a result of the dissatisfaction of field personnel filling out the bubble forms and an 80% failure rate in the readability of the bubble forms. A grant, funded by the State of California, studied possible alternatives for replacing the forms. That first grant began with a trial study by the Oceanside Fire Department. The year-long trial involved testing various hardware. Ultimately, the stand alone personal computer was chosen as the hardware of choice. Since then, additional grants have been awarded to continue the implementation of the QA Net.

The QA Net is a multi-purpose program consisting of "EMS form" (patient run entries), on-duty log which shows who is currently working on all unit, bypass status which shows whether or not each hospital is open, E-Mail, PAC report form, and ADHOC query & reporting. All but the last two options are available by field paramedics. On January 1, 1993, all 8 base hospitals went on-line for hospital resource information. In April 1993, Scripps La Jolla began entering ALS runs as the identified beta site.

The program consists of three phases as follows:

Currently, all but four hospitals are on-line and approximately 20% of the ALS unit are on-line. Phase two should be achieved by the end of 1996.

Personally, I LOVE the QA NET. It sure beats filling out all those bubbles. It provides statistics, some of which are required by the federal government, and is a great source of information and communication on what's happening in the pre-hospital setting. The possibilities are endless. The QA Net takes some time to get used to (just like any new skill) but once you work in it for awhile, you'll be very happy to be throwing those old bubble forms in the circular file (actually, you should probably send them back to the county). It's a lot faster and provides a legible legal record for court appearances. I'm hooked on the QA Net and I think you will be too.

If you would like further information on the QA Net,
please call Jean Buchanan at County EMS @ (619) 285-6429.

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