* CCT Team helicopter
Critical Care Transport (CCT) is the movement of critically ill patients who require higher level of care from one medical facility to another while maintaining advanced level of care during transport. Like many other hospitals in the country, Olive View-UCLA Medical Center (OVMC) lacks certain specialty services and require transfer to the tertiary hospitals. After immediate stabilization, patients often wait for transportation to another facility. The time it takes a patient to be transported and reach a medical facility for higher level of care, along with the care the patient receives en route, could mean the difference between life and death. Due to the limited numbers of available specialized CCT teams in the community, the time of arrival for the CCT crew varied significantly and patients waited up to 20 hours.
OVMC leadership, Medical staff, ER/ICU/Cardiology Registered Nurses, Respiratory Care staff, Nursing Education, LA County Emergency Medical Services, Alert Crew LA Fire Department Air Operations, and Medical Alert Center all took part in making this program a success. The Olive View CCT program was launched on October 1st of 2018. This collaboration resulted in the development of a program that could expedite emergency critical care transportations. Using existing resources, the team consists of highly skilled registered nurses, respiratory therapists, physicians and pharmacists working in collaboration with basic life support units to maintain a specialized level of care.
The program additionally helps the hospital in cutting expenses by using its own equipment and coordinating with LA County EMS services. Further, the new team saved the added expense of using private helicopter transport, and instead is able to utilize the nearby LA City Fire Department Air Operation to support the transport which cut the transportation time even more.
This innovative program was successful in its efforts to improve transport preparation time from activation to departure from 1-20 hours to 33.2 minutes. Olive View CCT successfully transported 30 emergency cases from October 2018 to December 2020. In addition to its accomplishments, Olive View Critical Care Transport program is the first adult CCT service in all of LA County Public Hospitals. Effective coordination between Nursing, Medicine, Pharmacy, EMS, and LA City Fire Department took a lot of effort in undertaking this project.