A local business owner recently donated lifesaving machines to the North Powder Fire Department.

Chris Arvidson, owner of Med Transport, a private business that transports non-emergency patients from one hospital to another while offering the medical assistance they need, donated a patient monitor and an auto defibrillator to the fire department.

The monitor shows the signs or heart rhythms of patients, and the defibrillator will help the department with CPR so they don’t have to exude the energy themselves, he said.

“Most (local) rural departments don’t transport patients,” Arvidson said. “Sometimes it can take 20 to 30 minutes for the transporting agency to get to the scene.”

He said 20 to 30 minutes of CPR takes a lot of energy. The machine will help them keep the patient going while they’re waiting.

“The (North Powder Fire Department) had four to five cardiac patients in the last three weeks alone,” he said. “I think the majority of departments could use (these machines).”

A volunteer for the fire department for six years, Arvidson said the monitor will also give the quick response team an accurate look of what is happening with their patient, which will help them determine whether they need to request an emergency transporting agency.

Arvidson said he personally has the equipment and the ability to help the patient in his own ambulance, but his business would be liable if anything bad were to occur. With the donation, the fire department takes on that responsibility.

The defibrillator that he donated uses the same type of batteries as those used by the La Grande Fire Department’s machine. This compatibility could come in handy should the batteries or either machine go dead.

“It really is a good addition to the community,” Arvidson said. “It’s amazing if you think about the amount of times in the past this could’ve been used.”

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