City Hall Overhaul Could Reduce Ambulance Crews

By: Sherelle Roberts Email
By: Sherelle Roberts Email

When you've got an emergency, whether it's life or death, or a simple injury, a Lexington EMS crew will show up with three people.
Chris Bartley with the Lexington Professional Fire Figthers union says that's the way it should be. But not everyone agrees with Bartley.

Mainly, the members of an independent consultation firm hired by the Urban County Government to evaluate the way the city does business. The firm is giving city leaders 424 suggestions to make the city run: "faster, better and cheaper".

The consultants say a good way to cut costs is to turn paramedic crews into a pair and not a trio. The firm says that's the way many major cities do it.

Bartley doesn't buy it, "I believe that report is flawed. especially when it comes to fire service," he said. "What they're proposing is efficiency but two is better than one in the back of an ambulance".

Mayor Jim Newberry, one of many who heard the recommendation today says, it's just that, a recommendation. But he says job cut recommendations are being made in many areas of the Urban County Government, and he knows some tough decisions will have to be made.

The Urban County Council will be meeting with the consulting firm again on Friday, to ask more questions about the 424 recommendations.

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  • by Anonymous Location: Lexington on Feb 27, 2008 at 01:12 PM
    Yes John in Danville there are usually 2 people per ambulance such as the one I work on however most ambulance services have the staff to provide the third person on the truck when providing the absolute best care possible when dying patients need it. One paramedic CANNOT handle a cardiac arrest in the back by himself doing CPR and manually defibilrating a patients heart, pushing life saving drugs. Lexington decided that instead of having to call for help that they just have that extra person on. Mayor Newberry would be well advised to not even give this idea a second thought if he wishes to continue to serve his constiuents It takes money to run an attractive city and he better quit being the tight wad he has been noted for or just bet on finding another job. Oh and just so anyone reading can get a grip on my credibility I am an EMT for a private service in lexington so I praise LFD for having 3 to a truck
  • by Anonymous Location: Lexington on Feb 27, 2008 at 11:54 AM
    Are you serious? This is the way to save money? Here's an idea. Let's just get rid of the Fire Dept altogether and let the police do it. They get credit for everything that goes on anyway. Give me a break! Step up and address the real issues in the government and stop trying to fix something that's not broke. The community would appreciate it.
  • by Tim Granger Location: Former Lexington Resident on Feb 27, 2008 at 06:52 AM
    Ok, I understand the reduction and the feelings that the wonderful folks of Lexington are expressing. I am an EMS worker here in Florida and here is my take on this. Lexington, like many cities across America run what they call a two-tier system, that is, they run and EC with an engine company. If the ECs ran two medics, they would always have the option to add another crew member from the engine company. There would be no reduction of manpower during medical or trauma crisis. I understand that it would concern the residents and I do agree that the mayor should not cut the proposed 25 firefighters, that is wrong. But Lexington, rest assured that the outstanding quality of care will not be compromised. The outstanding response times will not be compromised, remember, when the engine arrives prior to an EC, care is already taking place from highly qualified members of LFD. Lexington, please protest the cutting of 25 firefighters. God Bless you Lexington!
  • by Anonymous Location: Lexington on Feb 27, 2008 at 05:26 AM
    Well the fire department knew Newberry wasn't on their side from the beginning, which is why the fire department supported Isaac. What he's NOT telling everyone in the report is not only does he want to RISK lives in Lexington with the reduction of ambulance staff but he's also already canceled the new fire recruit class (after the guys already quit their other jobs to be in the class) AND he's proposing to cut over 25 current firefighters. FYI cities who use 2 people ALWAYS have more ambulances and smaller coverage areas...the BIG city of Lexington only has 9 ambulances...they need the extra hands!!) Mr. Mayor, I certainly hope your house never catches on fire OR your family and precious sons never need emergency medical assistance. Are you ignorant?! You never cut costs when it comes to life or death. What an idiot!
  • by JOHN Location: DANVILLE on Feb 27, 2008 at 04:54 AM
  • by Anonymous Location: Kentucky on Feb 27, 2008 at 04:38 AM
    I think this is a bad bad bad idea. These guys need extra hands in the back of an EC when dealing with a very critical situation. I know I would want to have 2 back there if it was me in one and not just one person I have to depend on to do all the work. This is not a good thing at all!!!!!! They need 3 all the time!!!!!!
  • by Tanya Location: Lexington on Feb 27, 2008 at 02:03 AM
    What the H*ll is our Mayor thinking? I worked for 5 years for a department in Ohio that our nearest hospital was 30 mins away from any given point in our territory and when we had a car wreck accident or a cardiac patient we needed 2 in the back to care for the patient and one driver if we wanted our patient to live, Yes we live in a larger city and are closer to any given hospital. we take an oath to preserve life and to give all patients a fighting chance and here our Mayor wants to take that away, I can only Pray that if he does reduce our EMS service that he or someone that he cares very deeply about ends up in the back with one EMT who he alone couldn't give adequet care to save there life, and not because of inadquet training because we are constantly in training to do our jobs to the best of our abilitys, one person can't do it alone.
  • by Anonymous Location: lexington on Feb 26, 2008 at 09:44 PM
    As a EMT for a private service in lexington I can honestly say the citizens love having the response they have and if this mayor cuts that he can count on packing his bags.


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