New device at Kaweah Delta saves lives, protects workers from COVID-19

Thanks to community donations, Kaweah Delta is using a new device to help save lives, which is also helping protect healthcare workers from being exposed to COVID-19.

Kaweah Delta is the first hospital in Tulare County to purchase the Lucas 3 Chest Compression System, an automatic CPR device, for use in its emergency department (ED). This device provides the patient with uninterrupted chest compressions, which can be life saving, but also helps prevent the spread of infections or viruses, such as COVID-19, between a patient and an emergency staff member.

“We always try to be on the cutting edge and this definitely does CPR a lot better than a human can,” said Dave Sanbongi, RN, Emergency Medical Services Coordinator at Kaweah Delta. “One of the things that is great about this is we don’t have to interrupt chest compressions when we switch people because it takes a lot of energy to do CPR and someone is tired. There is definitely improved clinical outcomes using CPR devices like this.”

Amid concerns of COVID-19, this purchase also protects staff from being exposed to the virus, said JR Garcia, Emergency Department Tech Supervisor at Kaweah Delta.  “Often, ED staff are on top of the patient doing CPR, and sometimes that’s unsafe because the particles that come out of a patient’s mouth can be harmful to the staff,” he said.

Not only is it safer during COVID-19, but the Lucas 3 helps prevent back injuries for hospital employees that perform CPR on a regular basis, Garcia said.

Kaweah Delta staff is thankful for the community donation and encourage the community to take steps to protect themselves from being exposed to COVID-19. “We want to continue to support you like you are supporting us. We encourage you to social distance, wash your hands and wear a mask,” Garcia said. “We thank everyone in the community who helped make this possible for their hospital, and to better their community.”

Kaweah Delta shares COVID-19 information and regular updates with the community on its website at and on its social media accounts.

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