LAS VEGAS, Nev. (FOX5) – Within minutes of shots ringing out on the UNLV campus on December 6th, police and rescue crews were on the scene – among them, Community Ambulance, whose emergency medical professionals made a difference on that difficult day.

”We received our first call that morning just before noon for a shooting that was taking place at UNLV,” Glen Simpson, Community Ambulance’s Senior Director says.

First responders acted quickly that day. 18 Community Ambulance crews answered the call, alongside police and fire crews.

“From a response time standpoint, our first ambulance was there within minutes, which ultimately took that first victim that we then transported to Sunrise Hospital, where that patient is still listed in stable condition,” Simpson tells us.

“Law enforcement was able to put the patient in the back of a police cruiser, that police cruiser met one of our ambulances, and that patient was then transported to the trauma center.”

Simpson says, while Community Ambulance was deploying resources to the shooting on campus, call for help were still coming from other locations. Dispatchers had to be strategic about where they sent ambulances and patients.

“We’re tracking where we’re sending patients to ensure that no one particular hospital is overran,” he explains.

“We do exercises a couple times a year with our community partners and train on this process of what it’s going to look like if there’s an incident where we’re going to have a lot of patients.”

This incident posing more personal challenges than usual for fires responders concerned for loved ones on campus. Some Community Ambulance team members actually on campus themselves at the time for healthcare classes.

“Some were studying at UNLV when the shooting occurred, so naturally, that became one of our first concerns was realizing that some of our personnel were there.”

Simpson says this is just another reason why mental health support is so vital for first responders after witnessing an event like this – as well as the many other tragedies they respond to in the course of a normal working day.

The Vegas Strong Resilience Center has resources and support for anyone who may need it following a traumatic incident.


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