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Posted by: thepinetree on 01/15/2008 11:14 AM Updated by: thepinetree on 01/15/2008 02:34 PM
Expires: 01/01/2013 12:00 AM
:



Mokelumne Hill to Lose it's Ambulance

Mokelumne Hill, CA...We were passed along some news that cuts are ahead for local Ambulance service from American Legion due to hard economic times. The Mokelumne Hill Unit will be phased out completely and the hours of an additional Unit will be curtailed. The call volumes have been lower than expected so they feel cuts are necessary...


Some of the potential ramifications could be reduced response times and in the event of additional calls in the Angels - Murphys Area it may force EPFD to keep one of their units down the hill longer and reduce their coverage.

From what we understand Ebbetts Pass Fire is already starting to have to do this. Further coverage reductions in other areas of the county will only accentuate the problem. EPFD call volumes are on the rise within their coverage as well. With the aging of the resident population and increased utilization of second residences along the Ebbetts Pass Corridor EPFD's call volumes will probably continue to rise.

It has been suggested that other Fire Districts in the county bring Paramedics on staff like EPFD and Copperopolis so at least when the Fire Depts. respond they have all the tools and training to help the patients.

In this model the Ambulance services become increasingly a transport function. In the Bay Area this is becoming predominately the practice. The Fire Depts. become the first responders in most situations and a company like AMR provides transport after initial treatment has been provided.

Ambulance companies tend to make money when their assets are being fully utilized most of the time. Fire Districts on the other hand need to have coverage on hand even if they are not being used to be able to fires. So if their units are forced to spend more time out of the home coverage areas it can have an affect on fire response times as well.

Let's hope that a good long term solution can be crafted for Calaveras County's Ambulance and EMS needs that will fit into our fiscal constraints as well.


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