I was at the Colorado EMS Conference at Keystone Resort last week. This is maybe the prettiest little Conference Center I’ve ever seen, up in ski country. While there I got a chance to see the latest version of the Hartwell CombiCarrier, the CombiCarrier II.
The original CombiCarrier was a great idea, and with this latest redesign it’s finally going to get the attention it deserves. The CombiCarrier II combines the construction of a plastic spine board, with the versatility of a scoop stretcher. It opens at both ends like a scoop, but unlike a scoop rarely “binds up” thanks to the robust locking mechanism. The circular plate steel lock has a lot more contact area, so both connecting it and taking it apart are much faster and easier than a scoop.
Many thought the first CombiCarrier somewhat heavy and thick. But the newest CombiCarrier feels even lighter than most plastic boards. It’s also much slimmer and easier to use. Not matter how good your log rolling technique, nothing beats a scoop for minimizing patient movement. Construction details include quick connect pins and carbon plastic reinforcing rods. These rods are located inside the handholds, so you have a tight lockup of reinforcement rod to plastic sidewall. This is a detail only used on the very strongest plastic boards like the Prolite XT. The CombiCarrier II combines the best aspects of both scoop stretcher and back board, with the weaknesses of neither.
It will accommodate a CID that they are developing for it now. The CombiCarrier II also has a unique advantage for those that loose a lot of boards in the ER. You don’t have to move the patient at all to take them off the board. Then you can just take it with you when you go. The CombiCarrier II should be available in about a month.