Hospital on wheels


B.C.'s state of the art Mobile Medical Unit made a pit stop in Kelowna for the day to support Interior Health's High Aquity Response Teams clinical education day on Thursday.

"We have a critical care nurse and respiratory therapist to transport critically ill patients usually from a rural hospital to a larger hospital, a lot of the times in Kelowna," said medical director of the High Acuity Response Team, Dr. Trevor Connolly.

Connolly's team consisting of Interior Health nurses, physicians and respiratory therapists from different hospitals participated in different simulations within the Mobile Medical Unit, for educational purposes.

These simulations use a high fidelity doll that can speak, blink and breathe. 

When the Mobile Medical Unit is being used in real-life situations, it can travel within the province to assist hospitals, natural disasters and to accommodate large crowds, such as concerts.

"We're very unique, there's no other teams that work like this in Canada or the world," said Connolly.

For rural areas before the Mobile Medical Unit, a doctor in a rural hospital would have to leave in order to transport a critically ill patient to a larger hospital, usually bringing a nurse with them and leaving the rural hospital without medical coverage for hours.

Now with the up-to-date technology and equipment, the Mobile Medical Unit can assist any kind of surgery.

"The patient is initially seen at the smaller hospital and if they need monitoring or drugs we can basically give the patient IC level care on the road," said Connolly. "So we're basically a mobile intensive care unit."

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