Feel free to brouse the article from Channel 11 News regarding Fulton County cutting their funding for Grady EMS. And you know I posted a response on their blog!!!
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Atlanta Ambulances Face Cutbacks
Web Editor: Jon Shirek 11-Alive NEWS
Last Modified: 3/14/2008 9:22:40 PM
Anyone who is in the City of Atlanta after June 30 and has a heart attack or is injured in a car wreck, or has some other life-threatening emergency, may have to wait more than 30 minutes for a life-saving EMS crew to arrive.
That's the warning contained in a report that Grady EMS is circulating among city of Atlanta councilmembers and employees of the Mayor's office.Councilmembers reviewed the report Friday at their semi-annual, work-session retreat.On June 30, Grady EMS will lose its contract with Fulton County to provide ambulance services in the city of Atlanta. Fulton County decided in November that it could no longer afford the $10 million a year that it costs to provide ambulance services in all of the county's municipalities. Nearly $7 million of that has been going to Grady EMS to respond to emergencies in the city of Atlanta.Council members had already been discussing at their retreat how to deal with the looming budget shortfall of about $65 million to $70 million, and whether layoffs or service cuts and tax hikes might be necessary to balance the budget. Then, on Friday, at the end of the retreat, Council President Lisa Borders brought up the Grady EMS "impact report" that describes what could happen if the council does not come up with nearly $7 million a year, and contract with either Grady EMS or some other EMS provider, to replace the emergency services Fulton County had been paying for.
"The impact would be dire," Borders said.According to Kevin Sullivan, the Deputy Chief of Grady EMS, "It is likely that response times to life-threatening emergencies will exceed 30 minutes."Sullivan said in his report, "A reduction of $6.7 million [that Fulton County had been paying Grady EMS] will lead to an inadequate number of ambulances on the street" because that amount of money accounts for one-third of his budget, and he would have to cut field staff. "We estimate that there will be fewer than 4 ambulances on stand-by for the entire city 98.7% of the time, and there will be no ambulances available for stand-by across the entire city 88% of the time."
"Clearly, emergency medical services are, in fact, a fundamental need of the community," Borders told 11Alive News on Friday. "So we want to be able to offer those in the best, possible way, the most efficient, but best, way we can."Councilmembers, though, point out that there is nothing in the City Charter requiring the city to provide ambulance services."We've presented them with an impact study," Sullivan said, but "there has been no committment from the mayor or anyone else in the city, yet, on whether the city will take it over."
Sullivan said that in 2007, Grady EMS responded to nearly 100,000 emergency calls in the city of Atlanta.Borders said the council will wait for the Mayor to propose a solution, and a budget for the solution. Then the council will act.Friday afternoon, a spokeswoman for the Mayor emailed a statment to 11Alive News: "According to our Chief Operating Officer, Greg Giornelli, 'We are still exploring the situation and looking at our obligations and will determine at that point what the right thing to do is.'"
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Grady EMS has tightened the noose around the necks of their field medics over the last few years, completely disolved the since of morale and fellowship. All in the name of "cost reduction" and "performance improvement".
The organization has had a 5+year witch hunt that has cost them dozens of medics who could easily rank the best in the country. Give them squallor to work in, pay them poorly. and dump in tons of constant abuse from ungrateful patients and public alike... and A+ medics will turn sour and give you a reason to let them go.
I have argued unsuccessfully that it is not about timestamps and statistics but the quality of care you provide to patients in need, as well as how you treat your employees. For Grady EMS to be better all the way around they need DOUBLE the budget they *were* getting to buy new rigs, new gear, hire more employees, FIND NEW MANAGEMENT, and up staffing 25% to provide the GREAT CARE AND CUSTOMER SERVICE any city deserves.
When someone's life is in your hands, you can't be rushed to make quotas and statistics. Give the field medics all the opportunity they need to do the job RIGHT!!!
--Signed, FORMER A+ MEDIC TURNED SOUR
p.s.: On behalf of all our soured medics, might I add... KARMA IS A BITCH YALL