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Ambulance Staffing in 3 man Combo Dept.

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  • Ambulance Staffing in 3 man Combo Dept.

    I run a 6 full time, 21 part time Fire Department that runs EMS. We run 1250ish calls a year with 80% of those EMS. We staff with 3, All Paramedic and FF 1& 2. There has been some questions on if we should respond with 3 or respond with 2 and have the third "chase". Leaving the third to return "in case of another call or fire" what are you thoughts?

  • #2
    The vast majority of EMS calls are relatively minor - two on the ambulance should be able to handle them just fine, IMHO.

    Also kind of depends on what you're chasing with - staff vehicle or utility/squad? The issue is if you have to strand that vehicle so the third crew member can ride the ambulance to the hospital if needed.

    Even then, unless your part-timer response time is lengthy, you can always wait for one or more of them to assist with a manpower intensive call, leaving the full-timer available as a core for subsequent calls.
    Opinions my own. Standard disclaimers apply.

    Everyone goes home. Safety begins with you.

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    • #3
      Simple answer: no need for 3 on the ambulance; respond with 2, and leave the 3rd guy (typically the captain or ranking officer) behind. Should a second EMS call come in, he or she can take another vehicle, acting as a first responder. Should a fire call come in, now you have a driver for the engine, and either part time personnel or volunteers can ride as crew.

      If the 3rd is needed for that medical call, they can respond in a chase car; few calls require 3 people to transport to the hospital. You might need additional hands on scene, but not once the patient is loaded into the ambulance. And if you do have one of those "2 medics in the back", just turn off and lock up the chase car and it can be picked up on the way back from the hospital.
      If my basic HazMat training has taught me nothing else, it's that if you see a glowing green monkey running away from something, follow that monkey!

      FF/EMT/DBP

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