Chicago Bike Medics Revive Tourist

From JEMS:

A 52-year-old woman who went into cardiac arrest on her way to the Taste of Chicago on Thursday was resuscitated, thanks to a quick-thinking passerby and a pair of paramedics on bicycles.

The unidentified woman, an Arizona tourist, was walking to the Taste when she collapsed near Balbo and Columbus around 10:30 a.m., Chicago Fire Department officials said. A good samaritan on her bicycle spotted the woman and began administering cardiopulmonary resuscitation.

Shortly after, fire department paramedics Michael Guerin and Elvis Falbo arrived on their bikes in response to a 911 call. The injured woman didn’t have a pulse and was not breathing, but the paramedics were able to shock her heart back into a normal rhythm with an automated external defibrillator from one of their bikes. “As soon as we shocked her, we got a pulse back,” Guerin said.

“I’ve been a paramedic for 15 years, and this is the first time I’ve defibrillated someone and had them wake up and start talking.” Guerin said the first words she spoke were, “Where am I?”

Hospitals nearing a deal with White House

From Politico:

Three major hospital associations are nearing a deal with the White House and Senate Finance Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) to provide more than $150 billion in savings to pay for a health care overhaul, three sources close to the process said Thursday.

There are still details to be resolved, but the negotiations have moved far enough along that the parties have discussed a Tuesday announcement. Yet some of the industry players involved are reluctant to announce a deal without President Barack Obama, who will be traveling abroad next week, according to one health industry source who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss private negotiations.

“It is not done, but they are close,” the source said.

An agreement with the hospital groups would boost Baucus’ effort to hold together an unwieldy coalition of industry, union and consumer groups working to pass a health care reform bill — rather than having some of the groups pouring money into campaigns against it.

Baucus and the White House reached a deal two weeks ago with the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers Association to put $50 billion toward a reform bill and $30 billion to defray drug costs for senior citizens.

The Senate chairman has been pressuring hospitals and insurers to follow the lead of the pharmaceutical industry and step up with savings to help pay for the $1 trillion health care package. He has reminded the six major health groups, including the American Hospital Association, of their May pledge to find $2 trillion in savings over the next 10 years.

New 911 system accepts text messages

From USA Today:

Black Hawk County, Iowa, has begun testing new technology that will make its 911 call center the first in the nation to accept text messages, The Chicago Tribune reports.

When the system goes live in mid-July, people with speech and hearing impediments will be able to contact emergency operators via text message, and operators will be able to repond the same way, National Emergency Number Association CEO Brian Fontes tells the Tribune.

Text messaging will eliminate a cumbersome two-step process by connecting deaf and hearing people directly.