Emergency Services at NCI at Frederick

By Madelyn Hurwitz, OHS Student Intern; contributed image
Two members of Company 50 pose with their ambulance.

Kenneth Wallech (left) and Randy Dolheimer (right), two members of Company 50.

Despite precautions and preventive techniques, injuries and emergencies can happen at NCI at Frederick. When they occur, employees should call the same number as they would when they are off-campus: 911.

Calling 911 will access Frederick County Emergency Communications, which will connect the caller with a dispatcher who asks a standard set of questions based on the type of emergency. When calling 911, it is essential to provide as much information as possible about the emergency and its location to ensure a quick response. In the case of a medical emergency on the NCI at Frederick campus, the Fort Detrick Fire and Emergency Services, Company 50, will be notified.

Company 50 addresses all emergencies inside the gates of Fort Detrick, including those at NCI and Army sites. Their ambulance is dispatched for all medical emergencies on base, and the emergency medical team follows the Maryland State EMS protocols, coordinating with local hospitals, such as Frederick Memorial Hospital, via radio. Company 50 is also responsible for providing public education and enforcing building code regulations.

In an interview, Company 50 personnel said they enjoy helping the community, being role models, and being members of a highly regarded profession through which they can develop meaningful relationships. Nevertheless, the rewards don’t come without work. The most difficult parts of their job include physical and mental stress, the need to maintain constant awareness of surroundings in order to be prepared for emergencies, and the requirements of continuing education and certification training.

Although there is a basic healthcare provider on the NCI at Frederick campus—Occupational Health Services (OHS)—it does not handle emergency situations and instead defers to Company 50. OHS’ role is to offer physical exams, monitor employees exposed to certain hazards through exposure programs—such as the Animal Exposure Program—and hold walk-in hours from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Monday through Friday. Furthermore, in the case of noncritical work-related injuries, OHS asks employees to report to its clinic so they can be treated and the incident can be handled in conjunction with safety staff.

While OHS handles the day-to-day health needs of the NCI at Frederick community, Company 50 ensures both the Army and NCI at Frederick are safe and supported in the event of an emergency. So, don’t forget to call 911 in a critical medical emergency.