Readers respond

E-mail letters to the editor to editor@emsworld.com. Letters may be edited for clarity and to conform to space requirements.

On the Right Track
I am the EMS training captain for the Midland Fire Department in Midland, TX. Our population is a little over 100,000. We have nine fire stations, one of which is a CFR station out at the airport. Of the in-town stations, six of them run ambulances. Similar to other departments, our business has shifted from fighting fires to providing EMS, and 86% of our calls are for EMS services.

I read Matt Zavadsky’s online article “Cultivating Stakeholder Relationships” and the issues he discussed are exactly what we are attempting to address here in our department.

We are looking to revamp our services to where they better serve the needs of our customers. We have improved our communication with our healthcare partners and are attempting to educate both our personnel and stakeholders, such as local officials and community leaders, on the services we provide. We are also searching for avenues to ease the burdens on our hospital in regard to both patient overcrowding and cost.
With the changes in healthcare reimbursement, accompanied with the aging of the “Baby Boomers,” we must look for better ways to provide our services without watering down the services we provide.

And so we have turned to LOSI, which stands for Level of Service Indicated. This starts with highly trained dispatchers who decide what resources to send, then onto highly trained personnel who respond and are able to provide LOSI and make transport decisions such as treat and release, transport to ED or to community clinic, communicate with a patient’s healthcare provider and set up an appointment, or simply provide education.
We are just starting this revamping of our service, so when I come across articles such as the one authored by Matt it gives me confidence that we are on the right track.
Manuel “Corky” Heredia Jr., EMS Training Capt./LP, MFD Training Division

Hit the Nail on the Head

I reviewed Mike Rubin’s column in the October issue (“Plan B”) and would like to say he hit the nail on the head.

Everyone in EMS needs to get a degree to fall back on. I didn’t and I’m paying the price.

While I’m a little too old to go back to school now, how I would love to have had the opportunities kids coming up have and don’t take advantage of. Hindsight is 20/20. I think I’m probably not the only one in this field who never saw the end coming and wasn’t prepared for it.
James Effinger, NREMT-P
Cresson, PA