2nd Edition of the Fire Service-Based EMS Electronic Tool Kit-A Resource for Leaders (2014)
 

Welcome to the On Line Home of the Fire Service Based EMS Advocates
   
Welcome!

Prehospital 9-1-1 emergency response is one of the essential public safety functions provided by the United States fire service in support of community health, security and prosperity.  Fire service-based emergency medical services (EMS) systems are strategically positioned to deliver time critical response and effective patient care.  Fire service-based EMS provides this pivotal public safety service while also emphasizing responder safety, competent and compassionate workers, and cost-effective operations. 
 
It is critical that policy makers understand the importance of having emergency medical services provided through the fire service. Fire service-based EMS is prehospital emergency 9-1-1 medical response provided by the nation’s firefighter EMTs and paramedics.  Due to the training, expertise, and equipment of fire service-based EMS responders, they are capable of simultaneously securing a scene, mitigating the hazard, and triaging, extricating, treating, decontaminating (if necessary), and transporting the patients who have been injured to an appropriate medical facility. Time efficiency is a key component of the best designed EMS systems. There is no service more capable of rapid multi-faceted response than a fire-based EMS system.
 
As the federal, state, and local governments consider their strategic plans for an ‘all hazards’ emergency response system, EMS should be included in those considerations and decision makers should recognize that the U.S. fire service is the most ideal prehospital 9-1-1 emergency response agency.
 

 
Adams County PA FIre Companies Merge EMS Operations to Better Serve Communities
Wednesday, March 25, 2015 
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Adams County fire companies merge, create Adams Regional EMS The consolidation will not affect fire service in Adams County.

By Lillian Reed

lreed@eveningsun.com

@lillianereed on Twitter

POSTED:   03/25/2015 04:17:05 PM EDT

 

Gettysburg Fire Department and United Hook and Ladder are joining forces to bring emergency medical services to 14 municipalities in Adams County, according to a news release.

The fire companies voted unanimously in January to merge and consolidate ambulance services, creating the Adams Regional EMS, which will run operations out of Gettysburg and New Oxford, with another operation in Bonneauville in the works, according to the release.

The merger, which will not affect fire service, will assume basic and advanced life support responsibilities by June 28, said Kevin Moul, an Adams Regional board member and United Hook treasurer. Basic life support includes emergency medical technicians who transport individuals to a hospital for medical attention. Advanced life support includes ambulances staffed by paramedics who are trained to administer care en route to the hospital and are equipped to handle issues such as cardiac arrests and congestive heart failure.

Moul serves on the nine-person Adams Regional Board of Directors along with Gettysburg Fire Department representatives Al Knerr, David Blocker and Bryan Wasylyk, United Hook and Ladder representatives Steve Rabine and Patrick Taylor, Adams County commissioners representative Randy Phiel, community member at large Ronald Hankey and Adams County Council of Government representative Barbara Underwood.

The change is in light of Gettysburg WellSpan's plans to end their services this summer, Moul said.

"They aren't ending their service until July 1 so we'll be covering each other for a couple of days to give us some time to get up and running," Moul said.

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WellSpan's exit will not occur until a regional system is in place and certain regulatory steps through the Department of Health are taken, said Gettysburg Wellspan President Jane Hyde.

"We believe a regional, less fragmented structure will be more sustainable in the long run," Hyde said.

The hospital's August 2013 announcement that it would end emergency response service in Adams County was motivated in part by an unsustainable business model, WellSpan officials said at the time.

Randy Phiel, who is also acting as the public information officer for the board, said he sees consolidation as a springboard for a more financially sustainable model.

I'm not sure what you mean by this. In the past, the department relied heavily on volunteers, which was problematic because it cost money to train and insure them, Phiel said.

Under the new model, Adams Regional EMS will retain the full-time paramedics employed by WellSpan and eliminate any reliance on volunteers through a billing system, he said. The new system will bill the user directly for the ambulance services.

"This is not designed to utilize fire tax or be a burden on the taxpayer," Phiel said. The area covered by Adams Regional EMS has the highest volume of 911 emergency calls, making the user billing system a viable option for funding the joint venture, Phiel said.

Moul said he anticipated Adams Regional EMS will receive between 4,000 to 5,000 calls within the first year of operation.

In addition, the regional service will be offering membership to an Ambulance Club that gives residents the opportunity to pay a flat rate, based on how many people are living in the home. In return, any cost of emergency services not covered by regular insurance will be waived, Moul said.

Though Adams Regional EMS has not yet released the exact rates for membership to the club, Moul said, finalized information will be circulated to residents some time in June.

Ultimately, Phiel said, he sees more municipalities coming into the merger in the future.

"As far as countywide consolidation, as long as Hanover stay in the EMS business, some of the eastern municipalities won't have a need to come in," Phiel said

Though Adams Regional EMS is not in membership talks with any other municipalities, there has been discussion of creating joint-billing with Fairfield, Littlestown and potentially Frederick County, Maryland, Moul said.

Now hiring

Adams Regional EMS expects to advertise job openings for paramedics and EMTs in the coming weeks.

Any questions about the services can be directed to Randy Phiel, Adams Regional EMS public information officer, at 717-337-9820 or by email at rphiel@adamscounty.us.

Coverage region

Hamilton Township

Berwick Township

Abbottstown Borough

Oxford Township

New Oxford Borough

Straban Township

Tyrone Township

Mount Pleasant Township

Cumberland Township

Mount Joy Township

Butler Township

Gettysburg Borough

Freedom Township

Highland Township

 




 
Fire Service-Based EMS Advocates Recognize National EMS Week
Monday, May 12, 2014 
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Sunday May 18, 2014 marks the beginning of National EMS Week and presents an opportunity to honor the men and women who deliver pre-hospital 9-1-1 emergency medical care throughout the United States. This vital public safety service is provided primarily by cross-trained, multi-role emergency responders who are based in our nation's fire departments.

The fire service has a rich history of protecting the health and safety of our communities through an 'all hazards' response model that includes the delivery of pre-hospital emergency medical care. Fire service-based EMS providers are located, trained, and equipped to provide virtually every community with timely pre-hospital 9-1-1 emergency medical response and patient care. Firefighter/EMTs and paramedics respond quickly, professionally, and compassionately in communities across the United States ...and they do it every day...24/7.

The Fire Service-Based EMS Advocates coalition recognizes the life-saving contributions and achievements, as well as the dedication and commitment, of those who serve in Fire Service-Based EMS systems. National EMS Week is a time to pause and say "thank you" to the entire EMS Community, including firefighter/EMTs and paramedics ...our nation's 'all hazards' response professionals.

The Fire Service-Based EMS Advocates coalition, based in Washington, DC, provides Members of Congress, federal agencies, and many others with information they need to effectively support Fire Service-Based EMS systems throughout the nation. For more information about the Fire Service-Based EMS Advocates and how to join the coalition, visit www.fireserviceems.com.     




 
CFSI/Medic Alert Excellence In Fire Service-Based EMS Award Best Practices Summary covering the period from 2011 through 2013
Monday, February 24, 2014 
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The winning submissions of the Congressional Fire Services Institute//Medic Alert Excellence In Fire Service-Based EMS Award Best Practices Summary covering the period from 2011 through 2013 is now available for download in a PDF format booklet. These award winning submissions may be accessed by clicking on the Title of this article. Each year Medic Alert in conjunction with The Congressional Fire Service Institute sponsors competitive awards in three categories based on fire department type. For more information on the awards contact the Congressional Fire Services Institute.


 
Medic Alert Foundation
Fire Service-Based EMS-There’s a New Tool Kit For Your Use
Chief Dennis Compton
Co-Facilitator Fire Service-Based EMS Advocates
   Chief Dennis Compton Co-Facilitator
      Fire Service-Based EMS Advocates




Fire Service-Based EMS-There’s a New Tool Kit For Your Use

By: Chief Dennis Compton

Many fire service leaders from management and labor have strongly advocated for the importance of being able to effectively represent our fire service-based EMS systems in the political arena. This includes focusing those efforts at the national, state and local levels of government where decisions are made on a regular basis that significantly impact EMS service delivery capabilities of fire departments. This issue is especially in the spotlight now because of changes being implemented incrementally throughout the country with the phase-in of the Federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). Educating elected officials and other policy-makers about the advantages of fire service-based EMS will be even more critical as fire departments consider whether to engage in opportunities and options that are sure to emerge over the next two or three years.

To assist the fire service with these challenges, a small group of major organizations recently came together to significantly overhaul the Fire Service-Based EMS Electronic Tool Kit that was originally developed in 2010. These partners included representatives from the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF); the Metropolitan Fire Chiefs Association; the International Fire Service Training Association (IFSTA); the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC); and the Congressional Fire Services Institute (CFSI). This new electronic tool kit can be accessed on the websites of each of the above organizations. Other organizations will provide links from their websites to the Tool Kit as well.

This Second Edition of the Fire Service-Based EMS Electronic Tool Kit is intended to provide fire service managers and union officials with a great deal of current information on fire service-based emergency medical services. The Tool Kit includes two sections:

Section One provides information and tools related to fire service-based EMS in general; and

Section Two provides specific information and tools directly related to the impact of the Federal PPACA on fire service-based EMS, as well as opportunities that the PPACA might present to fire departments as it is phased-in.

Both Sections - One and Two – include “talking points”, as well as various electronic links to documents described within the Tool Kit. There are also links to other resources, including websites and videos. Users may access these links and download resources at any time.

The information provided in the electronic tool kit covers many facets of fire service-based EMS. The “talking points” that are included can be used when communicating inside and outside of fire departments, including during presentations to the public, the media, elected officials, public mangers, the medical community and others. The various links provide information covering the historical background of fire service-based EMS, including an overview of deployment and service delivery issues. Also included in the Electronic Tool Kit are documents that stress the importance of effective interaction with the medical community, as well as EMS system components such as training/certification and billing/collection. Information about the operations of private EMS providers and other important areas are also stressed within the Tool Kit.

As previously mentioned, this new edition of the electronic tool kit is also rich with information related to the PPACA and opportunities that might become available to fire service leaders as they design and mange adjustments to their fire service-based EMS systems. New and enhanced partnerships between fire departments and the health care community, as well as others, are sure to be important as the PPACA is more clearly defined and implemented. This tool kit will provide information and tools to assist fire departments in so many ways. As users review the Tool Kit, they are encouraged to decide for themselves what information – opportunities – and options best interface with their specific system, situation and needs.

Some of the decisions made regarding the future of fire service-based EMS will be made by leaders on the inside of fire departments, but many of the decisions will also be made or approved by leaders on the outside of the department. These include a broad group of people, including elected and appointed public officials. Having good information, data and other tools will be critical to fire departments when making their case for maintaining and enhancing fire service-based EMS systems in the near and long term future. Hopefully, this electronic tool kit will provide a quality tool that might help fire departments be more successful. We should thank the IAFF; Metro Chiefs; IFSTA; IAFC and the CFSI for dedicating the resources, knowledge, motivation and leadership necessary to create this Fire Service-Based EMS Electronic Tool Kit. Now – as in almost all cases - it’s up to leaders within the fire service to make good use of it!

About the Author:

Chief Dennis Compton served as the Fire Chief in Mesa, Arizona for five years and as Assistant Fire Chief in Phoenix, Arizona, where he served for twenty-seven years. Chief Compton is the Past Chairman of the Executive Board of the International Fire Service Training Association (IFSTA) and Past Chairman of the Congressional Fire Services Institute’s National Advisory Committee. He is currently the Chairman of the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation Board of Directors. Dennis is also Co-Chairman of the Fire Service-Based EMS Advocates Coalition Steering Committee.


 
Fire Service-Based EMS Advocates Recognize National EMS Week
Sunday, May 19, 2013 
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Sunday May 19, 2013 marks the beginning of National EMS Week and presents an opportunity to honor the men and women who deliver pre-hospital 9-1-1 emergency medical care throughout the United States.  This vital public safety service is provided primarily by cross-trained, multi-role emergency responders who are based in our nation’s fire departments.
The fire service has a rich history of protecting the health and safety of our communities through an ‘all hazards’ response model that includes the delivery of pre-hospital emergency medical care.  Fire service-based EMS providers are located, trained, and equipped to provide virtually every community with timely pre-hospital 9-1-1 emergency medical response and patient care.  Every day, dual role firefighter/EMTs and firefighter/paramedics respond quickly, professionally and compassionately to medical emergencies in communities across the country.
The Fire Service-Based EMS Advocates coalition recognizes the life-saving contributions and achievements, as well as the dedication and commitment of those who serve in fire service-based EMS systems. National EMS Week is a time to pause and say “thank you” to the entire EMS Community, including firefighter/EMTs and firefighter/paramedics - our nation’s ‘all hazards’ response professionals.
The Fire Service-Based EMS Advocates coalition, based in Washington, DC, provides Members of Congress, federal agencies, and many others with information they need to effectively support fire service-based EMS systems throughout the nation. For more information about the Fire Service-Based EMS Advocates and how to join the coalition, visit www.fireserviceems.com.       


 
New Fire Service Based EMS Best Practices Added
   
The Advocates are pleased to post another round of Fire Service Based EMS Best Practices. Several of these were recognized by receiving national awards for innovation. Fire service based EMS delivery systems because of superior deployment and dedicated responders are perfectly suited to embrace change that improve patient care. Departments that submitted entries range from the largest municipal to a small volunteer and several in between. Does your department have a best practice to share? Let us know and we will post it on this site.Download the best practices by clicking on the Best Practice bar on the left side of this page.


 
Significantly Improving a Fire Service-Based EMS Deployment and Response System…an Innovative Model
The Phoenix Fire Department has been delivering paramedic level EMS service since the early 1970’s. Over the years we have deployed a number of delivery models, including taking over ambulance service delivery for the city in 1985. In 2006, under the direction of Fire Chief Bob Khan, then Local 493 President Billy Shields, and current Local 493 President Pete Gorraiz, the Phoenix Fire Department began the process of developing a long-term strategic plan. Read and/or download the entire article by clicking on the icon below.

Significantly Improving a Fire Service-Based EMS Deployment and Response System…an Innovative Model By: Assistant Fire Chief Todd Harms


 
Phoenix Fire Department
Kansas City FD and Metropolitan Ambulance Services Trust to Merge
Friday, November 13, 2009 
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Dispite opposition, Kansas CIty FD and Metropolitan Ambulance Services Trust will merge EMS into the Fire Department. The Advocates congratulate KCFD and Chief Richard Smokey Dyer on this important merger that will benefit all those who live work or visit Kansas City. Click on the title of this story to find links to the full story.


 
KDFD Fire Department

Read the Full Story in JEMS
Advocates Issue Statement During EMS Week
Wednesday, May 20, 2009 
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This week is National EMS Week, a special week to honor the men and women who provide pre-hospital 9-1-1 emergency medical care throughout the country.   To raise greater public awareness about these dedicated first responders, the Fire Service Based EMS Advocates issued a press release that we wantto share with each of you
 For the past two years, we have worked together to educate elected leaders and the public alike on the important role fire service-based EMS provides in the continuum of pre-hospital emergency medical care. Steering committee members have conducted presentations at major conferences and published articles in various first responder journals, focusing on the role of fire service-based emergency services personnel, to clarify who responds first when a 9-1-1 call is placed.
Denny Compton and Steve Austin, Co-Chairs of the Coalition are encouraging fire based EMS agencies to become Advocates Becoming a member requires little time and effort. All you need to do is support the mission statement of the coalition and write a letter seeking membership. The details are located on the Fire Service-Based EMS Advocates website (www.fireserviceems.com).  
If you have not joined, please consider taking a few minutes to become a member and send a message to our elected officials of your strong support for fire service-based EMS.
Many thanks from the Advocates For Fire Service Based EMS
 

 
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