The Student News Site of Utica University

The Tangerine

The Student News Site of Utica University

The Tangerine

The Student News Site of Utica University

The Tangerine

Utica College Emergency Medical Services recertified UC as a HEARTSafe campus

Photo courtesy of Colby Kusinitz.

Hannah Steyn, Assistant News Editor

The National Collegiate Emergency Medical Services Foundation promotes community awareness for saving lives through the use of CPR.

In order to raise awareness, the NCEMSF has developed the HEARTSafe campus initiative where designated campuses can become certified.

According to Colby Kusinitz, the captain of Utica College’s Emergency Medical Services, in order for a campus to be designated HEARTSafe, greater than 5% of the community must be proficient in CPR.  

“Utica College is hovering at about 10% as it stands,” Kusinitz said. “This certification is renewed every three years, and basically what it means is that we have enough of our student population certified that if someone were to have a cardiac issue, a heart attack or anything like that, there would be a high chance that someone nearby would have the required skills to at least help the patient until one of the UCEMS members or EMT’s could get there to help.”

Kusinitz was excited to announce that in conjunction with the Emergency Management Office, SLCE and the Deans office, UC will roll out a module during first-year orientation, to train incoming freshmen in hands-only CPR training and Stop the Bleed training.

“God-willing, there’s not, but if there’s a trauma on campus, incoming freshmen will now have the basic knowledge to stop bleeding,” Kusinitz said. “This just includes applying pressure, packing and applying a tourniquet.”

With this new training, UCEMS is hoping to increase its number of CPR-trained students to about 30% by the next certification in three years’ time. This number will include all students in medical fields, and the new classes for the next three years, as well as students in sororities and fraternities who are being certified.

Kusinitz said UC EMS was started four years ago by a student and is now responsible for handling emergency medical situations on campus, being on standby for sports games, and handling any medical training, like CPR, Stop The Bleed training and Narcan administration.

“We handle anywhere to 100 calls in a year,” Kusinitz said. “If someone isn’t feeling well, they call campus safety and we can assess them, which saves local resources from having to come onto campus. We are a fully accredited New York City agency, and we are state licensed EMTs.”  

UC community members interested in becoming certified in CPR or Stop the Bleed can contact [email protected]

“We as a campus are also EMS Ready,” Kusinitz said. “This means we have met with our local emergency departments, and we have a plan in place wherein an emergency situation UCEMS can help out as licensed EMTs, which is a great resource for situations where extra hands are needed.”

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