1. #1
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    Default Superior ambulance

    I posted a question like this in the firefighter forum but thought that posting it here would help as well seeing as I live in Illinois. I am currently finishing up my AAS degree in fire science and have just recently passed my NREMT-B exam. I am considering working full time at superior ambulance while I test for fire departments and possibly going to paramedic school. Does anyone have any experience working for a private ambulance company whether it superior or others? Good or bad? Thanks in advance for any help.

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    Like you have seen on forum the pay is not that good and you will probably be doing nursing home transfers. You do get to learn how to move patients from bed to stretcher and back. You also will get to use some medical equipment. Getting on fire department can take a while. Keep testing where ever you can. Good luck

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    Working for a private ambulance service, as others have stated, is often very busy with nursing home transfers, and not a whole lot of "exciting" calls. That said, it's not all bad. I have never worked for Superior (or any other private company like that), but know many people that have. Three of the people that I know who worked for Superior are currently fulltime Firefighter/Paramedics around the Chicago area. Nursing home transfers are the "bread & butter" of EMS, whether we like it or not. They pay the bills, and do help you learn basic assesment skills. To be a good Paramedic, you MUST be a good Basic first.

    Obviously, continue to make yourself more marketable. Get your FFII, get your Paramedic license, get FAE and HAZMAT-Ops certifications. Volunteer as a firefighter if you can.

    And my note regarding the pay. Many people consider it not that good. However, I work in central Illinois, and am a full time Paramedic. My pay is about $12/hr. I also work for an service that pays better than any of the competitors in the area, by up to $3/hr for both EMT's and Paramedics. I know Superior pays better than we get down here. It's all in your perspective. (Of course, my cost of living is greatly less than many of the suburbs, but not all.)

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    thanks for the info trey. I have a question for you if you dont mind regarding getting my FFII. The CC im at now, college of dupage offers it but to take it you have to be on a roster somewhere, but at the same time it seems required to apply for depts, am I missing something there? I realize if I go volunteer or POC I would then get sent through it but currently am having trouble finding either of the above. Any tips are appreciated.

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    If you like (or think you may like) EMS Superior may very well change your mind. Working for a private SU*KS. period end of sentence.
    Try to get a paid on call department to send you to the fire academy and work PT or volunteer for a FD.
    It is about the same as wanting to be a five star chef and working the grill for Burger King.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ADSNWFLD View Post
    If you like (or think you may like) EMS Superior may very well change your mind. Working for a private SU*KS. period end of sentence.
    Try to get a paid on call department to send you to the fire academy and work PT or volunteer for a FD.
    It is about the same as wanting to be a five star chef and working the grill for Burger King.
    so i hear, but I think im going to give it a try for a little bit and see what happens. i see it says youre in wheaton, as am i. Are you on their dept? if you dont mind me asking. Also it seems noone around us is offering POC currently, and I could try to join the Glen Ellyn volunteer but I haven't looked into the rules not being from Glen Ellyn and all.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sTages19 View Post
    thanks for the info trey. I have a question for you if you dont mind regarding getting my FFII. The CC im at now, college of dupage offers it but to take it you have to be on a roster somewhere, but at the same time it seems required to apply for depts, am I missing something there? I realize if I go volunteer or POC I would then get sent through it but currently am having trouble finding either of the above. Any tips are appreciated.
    Unfortunately (in my opinion), the State of Illinois requires you to be a member of a fire department to apply for your FFII certification. (Or, for that matter, to receive any certification.) The way it works is you take the classroom and practical portions. To take a test, your instructor must send a request to the state with three dates you would like to take the test. Your fire department receives a letter that states what day you are signed up. You then go, take the test, and go home. Your fire department receives the grades. ONLY after you receive the grade for ALL required modules (if there are more than one – FFII has 3) can you then apply for your certification. Your Fire Chief, School Director, AND Instructor sign a form attesting that you have completed the classroom and practical portions. You never actually send your practical portions to the state. Then your Fire Department receives your actual certification.

    In my opinon this is somewhat complicated, as it requires a second/third party to get involved. It is, however, what it is.

    Here’s two excerpts from the form you must complete:

    This form is to be signed by the School Director, Instructor AND employing Fire Chief before submission to Office for certification.

    By my signature as employing Fire Chief, I certify this individual is an employee of my fire department meeting specifications in 50 Illinois Compiled Statutes (ILCS) 740/2, Illinois Fire Protection Training Act. I attest that this applicant has exhibited experience and documentation exists supporting the appropriate Illinois Administrative Code. All certification training requirements for this individual have been met, applicable practical skill evolutions have been successfully accomplished, and training records exist substantiating this documentation and are available for review by the Division of Personnel Standards and Education.

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    Three of the guys on my department work for Superior, others for various other private ambulance services in the Rockford area. Superior appears to pay substantially better than the others, from what I can tell, and they also run "day trucks" and twelve hour overnights (as well as some 24/48), so you don't always get the 24/48 shifts like the others in the area.

    Superior is doing some minimal 911 style work in this area, so the guys get excited for that. The other privates that cover Rockford do substantially more 911 work, so you get trauma and more "emergent" situations with them than you would with Superior. They still do transfers of course, but with the way EMS is handled in my area, a LOT of it is handled by privates.

    Most of the guys work full time hours on the ambulance, pick up paid shifts with us at the fire department (we're not full time) and test for career departments. Four that I know of that worked on private ambulances have been hired on career departments in the past year, so the experience can't hurt you. For whatever reason, however, none of those four were working for Superior.
    Last edited by npfd801; 02-13-2010 at 07:14 AM. Reason: read other posts better... NUR
    "Share your knowledge - it's a way to achieve immortality." - Stolen from Chase Sargent's Buddy to Boss program

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    Quote Originally Posted by npfd801 View Post

    Superior is doing some minimal 911 style work in this area, so the guys get excited for that. The other privates that cover Rockford do substantially more 911 work, so you get trauma and more "emergent" situations with them than you would with Superior. They still do transfers of course, but with the way EMS is handled in my area, a LOT of it is handled by privates.

    Most of the guys work full time hours on the ambulance, pick up paid shifts with us at the fire department (we're not full time) and test for career departments. Four that I know of that worked on private ambulances have been hired on career departments in the past year, so the experience can't hurt you. For whatever reason, however, none of those four were working for Superior.
    I worked for a paid service PT in NY for a while that was similar - we ran mostly transfers, 'emergent' nursing home to hospital calls, transports to physical rehab, LOTS of renal transports from home-treatment-home again.....the 'nice' thing was we also supplied ALS and back-up BLS to the local community when needed - like the night there was a multi-car accident on the local highway.....I still have a citation our crew received for the work we did there (long, involved extrication of one person, I had a guy with back issues who couldn't be backboarded on his back - had to get creative.....we saw a LOT that night).......

    I also ran volunteer at the same time as well as being involved in my FD....I was busy!

    Also - ANY experience is better than NO experience in my opinion!

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    So, how did it work out? get on anywhere yet?

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    Thanks all. I guess you can say its working out well for now, Im working FT with superior and enjoying it. I'm just happy to have a job ha. Finished my fire science degree a few weeks ago and plan to take the CPAT in May, then I will hopefully start applying for departments after that. I dont turn 21 until the end of may so I've got some time before I can start applying. It seems like around here you have to be a medic so I intend to apply to medic school at some point but would like to try and get on a dept for a little first. Pretty disappointed I couldnt apply for either Arlington Heights or Lombard due to age requirements because those are both in the area I would love to be. Ya win some and ya lose some.

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