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Save Emergency Services (Proposal)

Save Emergency Services (Proposal)

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Published by: Elizabeth K Gordon (aka elizag) on Apr 11, 2012
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04/11/2012

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Rensselaer County Fire and Rescue:
A reorganized manner of Emergency Services to Rensselaer County
By Brent CampbellRensselaer County New York is situated just East of Albany by the Hudson River.Rensselaer has a unique and busy fire and Emergency Medical Services (EMS) systemthat annually answers over 100,000 calls for help (Rensco). Despite this apparentefficiency, Emergency Services within the county are at best a disorganized mess. Theentire county is overwhelmed by an outdated system that puts too much emphasis onindividual agencies while failing to see the county as a whole. A
 
new modernizedsystem could shorten current response times while saving county taxpayersmillions.What is wrong with the current system of fireand EMS within Rensselaer County? Many aresimply not aware that a problem exists. Despitehaving only approximately 152,538 citizens(Wikipedia Contributors) there are 60 respondingagencies that provide emergency services within thecounty.
 
43 of these agencies are Fire Departments,each having on average 5 vehicles. 17 additionalagencies provide Emergency Medical Services.(Rensco) It can be estimated that there are approximately 215 vehicles withinRensselaer County that are dedicated to Fire and EMS. For an area of 654 square milesthat may not seem like many until one realizes that is 1 vehicle for every 3 square miles
 
of land! Even more pressing is the lack of use of these vehicles; many Fire Departmentsanswer at best a call per week, some trucks will sit for a month at a time. EmergencyMedical Services on average have two or more ambulances, one for the duty crew andone as a spare used infrequently. It is now easy to see how over saturated EMS and Fire
Pic 1 Rensselaer County Fire and Rescue,like this patch is old and antiquated.
Comment [e1]:
Sounds and look
Comment [e2]:
Effective tone
Comment [dgc3]:
redundant
Comment [e4]:
Spell out numbeand unless more than 3 words.
Comment [dgc5]:
Can you gatheother areas in the US?
 
is within Rensselaer County, this equates to higher taxes for maintenance andreplacement of vehicles plus the huge task of managing 60 agencies within the county.<good researching. Who is dgc?
 –
was helpful.Throughout the nation, Emergency Services areprovided in varying manners. There are careerdepartments, volunteer departments and combinationdepartments that combine a career staffing system withvolunteers responding in times of need. King County,WA is located in the lush green foothills of the CascadeMountains and covers a very large area, including theCity of Seattle. Despite having a population of 1,875,519(Wikipedia Contributors) the entire county is covered by 24 agencies. One example of a successful implementation of a combination department Eastside Fire & Rescuelocated on the eastside of King County. The department was recently established fromthe combination of several smaller volunteer departments. Another unique aspect isthe allocation and use of EMS assets within the county. <good clear explanation of thedufferent typesMedicOne, the EMS entity thatcovers King County, came to be in the1970s and was the first
of it’s kind.
Medic
One isn’t an agency per se
, but aconcept of a unified system throughstandardized care and equipment acrossthe county. The program helps toestablish guidelines for stocking of equipment, staffing requirements and,standardization of care throughout the
Pic 2 The logo for the King CountyMedic One program, the programallows standarization of carethroughout the county. <nice caption!Pic 3 A brand new Medic One Unit for King County, thisunit will be an ALS Medic Unit while other lower levels of care are BLS Aid Units.
Comment [dgc6]:
You can simplify this
 –
 
“The EMS and
FD saturation within Rensselaer County results in highertaxe
s…”
 
 
county enabling multiple agencies to be one cohesive entity
. 40 years after it’s initial
beginnings the MedicOne program is regarded worldwide as one of the best in EMS.
The system literally begins and ends with the citizens of the community.
(IlluminAge)A similar system was recently employed within the county for the Fire Service with theconsolidation and combination of many volunteer agencies (similar to the many thatcurrently dot Rensselaer County) into several larger combination departments. EastsideFire and Rescue is the result of one such combination that took place in January 1999.(EFR - Homepage) - GoodEastside Fire and Rescue was established out of a need for a more cohesive andstandard response within the Eastern Region of King County. EFR covers an arearoughly the size of Rensselaer County and provides both fire and EMS services withintheir territory.
The Agency wasfounded on the principle that weare better together as [one] thanapart when it comes toeconomics, resources, andgovernance.
(EFR - Homepage)The agency serves 140,000 peoplefrom 16 stations strategicallyplaced
throughout EFR’s
territory.Some stations in less active areasare volunteer-only or paid-per-callwhile more active stations having a full time crew with volunteers responding to helpwhen necessary. A similar system, if employed in Rensselaer County, couldrevolutionize the way in which Emergency Services are provided. Clear proposalstatement. Persuaive because of this extended precedent.
Pic 4 Eastside Fire and Rescue Engine 82, the consolidated agencypurchased this quint after the merger in 1999.
Comment [e7]:
Great quote: rea

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