Lansing Emergency Services awarded $25,000 grant to enhance heart attack care

Several members of the Lansing Emergency Medical Services (EMS) crew are pictured above with a new monitor that will be used to enhance the care of heart attack patients served by Lansing EMS. The purchase of the monitor was made possible by a $25,000 grant from the American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline initiative. Pictured above, left to right, are: Front row - Matt Wagner, Ann Wagner, Paul Manning and Lisa Smith. Back row - Andy Wagner, Ken Johnson and Gary Bottorff. Submitted photo.

Lansing Emergency Medical Services (EMS) has been awarded a $25,000 grant from the American Heart Association as part of Mission: Lifeline, an American Heart Association community-based initiative aimed at improving the system of care for heart attack patients throughout rural Iowa. The Lansing EMS organization says the grant has specifically funded the purchase of a monitor which will perform all the vitals signs such as pulse, blood pressure, respiration and SPO2, as well as record and transmit a patient’s heart tracing directly to the emergency providers at the hospital, before the crew leaves the patient’s location.

Each year, hundreds of thousands of Americans have the most serious type of heart attack known as an ST-elevated myocardial infarction, or STEMI, in which blood flow is completely blocked to a portion of the heart. Unless the blockage is eliminated quickly, the patient’s life is at serious risk.

Currently, around two-thirds of STEMI patients fail to receive the best available treatments to restore blood flow. Mission: Lifeline seeks to save lives by closing the gaps that separate STEMI patients from timely access to appropriate treatments.

Hospitals involved in Mission: Lifeline are part of a system that ensures STEMI patients get the right care they need, as quickly as possible. Mission: Lifeline focuses on improving the system of care for these patients and at the same time improving care for all heart attack patients in Iowa.

“We are truly grateful to the American Heart Association and the Helmsley Charitable Trust for this grant,” said Matthew Wagner, Service Director at Lansing Emergency Medical Service. “We will now have the opportunity to identify a heart attack faster, and provide lifesaving treatments before significant damage, or even death, occurs. Mission: Lifeline has expanded the reach of the PCI hospital and treatment times optimized with the tools, education, and resources of Mission: Lifeline. The result is access to the most advanced STEMI care for all patients in Iowa, regardless of location.”

In collaboration with stakeholders representing hospitals, individual ambulance services and regional EMS Medical Directors, the project will enhance many critical elements of an optimal STEMI system of care: a system-wide data tool for quality measurement and improvement; ongoing medical provider training and STEMI education; coordination of protocols for rural EMS and hospital personnel; regional plans for rapid transport of patients; and a public education campaign on heart attack symptoms and the need to call 9-1-1.

Funding focused on enhancing rural systems is being awarded for hospitals and ambulance services to enhance 12 L ECG equipment and training. The program is made possible by $6.1 million in funding, including a $4.6 million grant from The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust. 

The American Heart Association (AHA) is devoted to saving people from heart disease and stroke the two leading causes of death in the world. AHA teams with millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies, and provide lifesaving tools and information to prevent and treat these diseases. The Dallas-based association is the nation’s oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke.

The Midwest AHA Affiliate serves an 11-state region that includes Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wisconsin. To learn more or to get involved, call 1-800-AHA-USA1, visit or call any of the AHA offices around the country.

The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust aspires to improve lives by supporting exceptional nonprofits and other mission-aligned organizations in the U.S. and around the world in health, place-based initiatives, and education and human services. Since 2008, when the Trust began its active grantmaking, it has committed more than $1 billion to a wide range of charitable organizations. The Trust’s Rural Healthcare Program funds innovative projects that use information technologies to connect rural patients to emergency medical care, bring the latest medical therapies to patients in remote areas, and provide state-of-the-art training for rural hospitals and EMS personnel.

To date, the Rural Healthcare Program has awarded more than $200 million to organizations and initiatives in the upper Midwest states of North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Wyoming, Minnesota, Iowa and Montana. For more information on the Trust and its programs, visit