1. #1
    Kyle Wickman
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post looking to add 1st responder to our Dept.

    Our fire department is on the verge of adding 1st responder to our list of things we do. I am looking for info about how you started it. How did the cops take it. What about the rescue squad? They are short handed. Did you get more pay? please help!!

  2. #2
    BURNSEMS
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Talking

    Good Deal, We started ours in Feb of 1997 at that time the Fire Chief would not allow it to be F.D. associated, well it is now F.D.associated and doing great, as far as Law Enforcement just remember they have a Job to do too, Educate them, meet with them and explain your purpose, Learn what they do During Hot Calls Like a Homicide so that you dont destroy evidence in the process of doing your Job. We provide A.L.S. and B.L.S. Response depending on who is at home at the Time,, In a few counties around here First Responder actualy means get on scene and watch,, Avoid This,, Be Pro Active it took about 3 Months for folks around here to figure out why a Huge Red Fire Truck with 3-5 people arrived when they called for a Ambulance so let people Know what you do and why you do it, If you are Volunteer then money for such ventures may be tight, let the public Know that you provide this Life Saving service for free and Donations help even more. Our Medical Equipment was supplied by our EMS Company that provides response to our City, think about how your going to replace your Equipment, we Trade 1:1 if we use our K.E.D. we get one from the Rig ect. Your Exposure to the public will expand make sure its the Exposure you want,, it cost more in Gas, Loss of Sleep, Man Power,and general work but it will pay for it self in the Long Run,, We do Rescue too so our Dept is all in one, we just recently sent 4 EMS members to a Rope Rescue Class so we are starting into a few more specialty areas. As far as members go we have 7 EMS folks we sent to a EMT-B class who do not belong to the Fire Dept they strickly run EMS calls, Dont cut your nose off, these type folks are a true blessing if any come up use them,, there are just too many other possibilities, Who will provide you with medical contol if your State requires it and on and on,, Just go forward its a long road but a fun journey...

    ------------------
    Here today for a Safer Tomorrow

  3. #3
    FFE3BFD
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Thumbs down

    Started 1st responder July 13 1999, and I personally think it sucks! Tripled the runs for the same money. We will have to wait until the next contract negotiations to get a stipend and thats three years away.(state average is about 2.5%)


  4. #4
    BURNSEMS
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Angry

    If you dont Like EMS get out, quit, dont respond, turn off your pager, Its not for everyone just Like Firefighting, Get in the real world, America is not Burning as much as the past, However the generations are getting older, More Crime, More Drugs, More Vehicle Accidents,EMS is the mainstay of American Health Care on the Streets and we are NOT going to get rich personaly or Departmentaly by Running EMS,it is a necessary evil for the Fire Service and will only continue to grow Nation Wide... and there is not a end in sight.

  5. #5
    FFE3BFD
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Thumbs down

    What my point is, our work load increased while the pay stayed the same. I'll do 1st responder runs because its in my job description, I just want to be compensated. I was hired as a firefighter not a mobile nurse.

  6. #6
    Dale Smith
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    I feel what is the differance if your responding to a fire to help or to a medical. Our job is to help the public and we tend not to be as public as the police so funds become harder to come by. I think that being a first responder, EMT, Medic, is good. Not only do you help your community you may just some day save the life of one of your family members. In MA it is a require for all FF's to be at least a first responder. To start it going maybe you can contact the local hospital or the ambulance service that is in your area. It is a good thing. After all who will take care of a victim at the fire scene if we don't?

    ------------------

  7. #7
    Davidjb
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    I am going to start my 1st responder course on the 19th. I am on a call dept and the chief put it out as a voluntary course, if you want to take it, take it, if you don't, don't.
    Our town has it's own ambulance corps but it has been many an ems call where mutual aid had to be called in due to lack of response from the ambulance members. We have 5 or 6 emt's on the dept and 5 people taking the 1st responder course.
    I see it as setting ourselves up to assist the ambulance when they need it for whatever reason. We will not be toned for all ems calls, only when an ambulance member requests it.
    We have also outfitted one of our engines with basic medical supplies plus 2 longboards, a shortboard, and O2.
    Personally I believe the move will benefit the residense of our town and will be good for the dept but I know not everyone on the dept thinks so. Along with all this was a change in the title of our organiation from fire dept to fire & rescue.

    ------------------
    David Brooks, Firefighter, D/O
    Newmarket Fire Department
    Newmarket, New Hampshire
    http://www.NewmarketNH.com/Fire



  8. #8
    ProfVol
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    We have been first responding for years. We do it for the community but get nothing extra except for satisfaction of helping. I hear everyone says that EMS is the future for FD and we better like it or get out. I disagree with this. WE as the FD get called to help EMS because they run two people per truck and seems always to need a driver or people to lift the patient. Paid depts may be able to run fully staffed EMS unit and that is great if you can. Volunteers cant do this because of mainly cost. Dont say then the FD should become paid because that is not an option due to cost. The first and upmost job of a FD is fire protection in my opinion (yes, other will disagree but that what makes this country the best, another opinion). dont have a problem with the police, we work well with them.

  9. #9
    ProfVol
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    We have been first responding for years. We do it for the community but get nothing extra except for satisfaction of helping. I hear everyone says that EMS is the future for FD and we better like it or get out. I disagree with this. WE as the FD get called to help EMS because they run two people per truck and seems always to need a driver or people to lift the patient. Paid depts may be able to run fully staffed EMS unit and that is great if you can. Volunteers cant do this because of mainly cost. Dont say then the FD should become paid because that is not an option due to cost. The first and upmost job of a FD is fire protection in my opinion (yes, other will disagree but that what makes this country the best, another opinion). dont have a problem with the police, we work well with them.

  10. #10
    ProfVol
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    We have been first responding for years. We do it for the community but get nothing extra except for satisfaction of helping. I hear everyone says that EMS is the future for FD and we better like it or get out. I disagree with this. WE as the FD get called to help EMS because they run two people per truck and seems always to need a driver or people to lift the patient. Paid depts may be able to run fully staffed EMS unit and that is great if you can. Volunteers cant do this because of mainly cost. Dont say then the FD should become paid because that is not an option due to cost. The first and upmost job of a FD is fire protection in my opinion (yes, other will disagree but that what makes this country the best, another opinion). dont have a problem with the police, we work well with them.

  11. #11
    Kyle Wickman
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Angry

    One of our biggest problems is the police. They don't want a cop car, engine, rig and a MICU unit all parked out side. We told them why do you bother coming then? Go fight crime and let us do this!! Does any one else have a problem like that?

  12. #12
    BURNSEMS
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Talking

    Hey Guys, whats up with the Police, I have seen other Post about Troubles with the Police, and I am not Going to start a War here, however I am a Police Officer as Well as Fire Fighter Paramedic, our Patrol Vehicles Carry B.L.S. and A.L.S. equipment Bunker Gear and a Air Pack, there are two Officers on Duty at All times one of which must be cross Trained, I cant understand why there would be trouble unless there is a Break down in Communications, or S.O.P., each has a Job to do and should do it with as Little friction as possible, maybe a sit down between Departments would Help,,, Hope you can work it out...

  13. #13
    DED1645
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Thumbs up

    First Responders on apparatus to me is definately a big plus. Besides it makes you a more versatile firefighter. Beside speaking on the EMS side of the bridge. The extra hands are always appreciated. If your not needed then you're recalled. Besides it will give you a great idea if the medical field is for you. If you like it, then you can go onto EMT school and continue from there if you like. As far as some people complaining about call volume increasing and you stated you were paid. Don't complain at least you're getting something for it. Look at the stats for www.kentland33.com and then tell me about true vollies running 5,500-6,000 call a year for nothing.A you would never hear any of the great men at that station complain. I'm not a member, but I was given the honor of running at the station as a guest.

    ------------------
    David DeCant
    firefighter/NREMT-B
    Originally Mantua,NJ
    Presently Lindenwold,NJ



  14. #14
    Whip
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Smile

    My Depts. first responder is for ALS type calls only, ie S.O.B., Chest Pains, Cardiac History, Unconscience, you get the drift. We only responed to minor things (stubbed toes, ect) if the ambulance is delayed(leaving the hospital 10 min away) or if the call goes to a mutual aid service. This is a benefit because we get experience with medical calls, but we don't get burned out. See if this is a feasable option for your department.

  15. #15
    Pamela Baber
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Our volunteer fire department has had first responders for more than ten years. We currently have on our unit 2 paramedics,
    2 Emt-Basics and 9 first responders. 3 of these individuals are also firefighters on our department. We receive no monetary reimbursement for time. Our department usually runs more EMS calls on a yearly average than fire calls. Our fire side responds to all MVAs and woods and water rescue calls. We do joint training. The EMS
    side of the department is allocated about 1/3
    of the fire budget. We also receive donations from the community to fund special equipment and projects. Our ambulance service is approximately 20 miles away and we do have an intercept agreement with an ALS service of about the same distance. We request Als as needed and do have the ability to access air transport when appropriate. We work with our county sheriffs department and have a very good working relationship. We early on, invited them to do a training for our department on "how not to mess up an accident or crime scene" and know that they are glad to see us when we arrive. We exchange equipment and supplies with the responding ambulance service as we have no means of billing the patient. We do not maintain a call schedule and usually have at least six members turn out regardless of the time of day. We utilize the services of the medical director from the ambulance service so that there is continuity in protocols and patient care. We are fortunate that we have a chief who supports our efforts and recognizes the need to diversify the department to meet the needs of the community.

    When you get to the point of formulating protocols, I have them on computer. Why re-invent the wheel. It will at the very least give you a starting place.

  16. #16
    Terry Burns
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Cool

    I am currently the Capt. of our VFD and have been an officer of this dept. for over 7 yrs. I am also the chief of our Quick Response Team that provides Medical First Response for our fire district but is totally separate from the fire dept. I have been a member of both for 15 years. We have all witnessed many changes in the fire and ems services over the years and when it comes to providing an increase in services to the community, we all know how demanding it can be on our departments, especially the volunteers. I am currently in a dilemma over daytime coverage on both the QRTeam and the fire dept. We have tried many tried and true methods of recruitment for our QR Team with little success. It has now come to the point where I have approached the Fire Administrative Board and have asked them to consider having the fire dept. absorb the duties of the QR Team and to hire some full time personnel to man the station during daytime hours. With the QR Team and Fire Departments call volume combined, it should be enough to justify full time staffing of the fire dept.if it includes duties beyond just sitting and waiting for calls. This should also help with daytime fire dept. staffing as we also have a problem getting enough personnel to show up on an alarm during the work week. With our dept. just placing ourselves into the rescue service also with the implementation of vehicle rescue equipment purchased by the support of our great community, I believe this to be the wisest choice. We will be able to give back to our citizens a more complete service than they have ever experienced before by giving them a more rapid response time to their call along with quicker care for their emergency. I believe our citizens deserve the best and if they're willing to support the service then we should be willing to give them our best efforts.

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  17. #17
    smoke1713
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Thumbs up

    BEING FROM A RURAL SYSTEM THE 1ST RESP. PROGRAM HERE IS A REAL LIFE SAVER. SOMETIMES THE CLOSEST EMS UNIT IS 15 OR MORE MILES AWAY. FD 1ST RESPS ARE TONED TO STABLIZE UNTIL EMS ARRIVES. SOME LOCAL FDS HAVE ALS SOME BLS, SOME HAVE AEDS SOME DON'T, BUT WHATEVER THE CASE SOMETHING IS BETTER THAN NOTHING. THE COMMUNITY FEELS SAFER. ALSO AS A RESPONDING MEDIC ON A EMS TRUCK GOING INTO A SCENE WHERE 1ST RESPS HAVE BEEN ON SCENE YOU GET A GOOD SIZE UP, RX HAS ALREADY BEEN STARTED; WETHER IT BE BASIC BLS, AED , CPR OR SOMETIMES ALS WITH IV'S INTUBATION OR MEDS, AND IF YOU NEED X-TRA HANDS ONE OR MORE OF THEM WILL RIDE IN WITH YOU. THIS TAKES THE NEED FOR TAKING MUTUAL AID TRUCKS OUT OF SERVICE FOR X-TRA HELP. I STARTED MY EMS CAREER IN 1990 AS A SIMPLE DOT 1ST RESP. NOW 9 YEARS LATER I AM A NREMT-P , EMS INSTRUCTOR, ANDM GETTING READY TO START CCEMTP TRAINING; WHAT I'M SAYING IS IT IS A GOOD WAY TO START A EMS CAREER. SO GO FOR IT! FIRST RESPONDERS CAN ONLY HELP THEY DON'T HURT. AND FOR PPL WHO DON'T LIKE RUNNING THE CALLS, YOU NEED TO RE-EVALUATE YOUR THINKING OF PUBLIC SERVICE AND WHAT IT MEANS , REMEMBER CHANGE IS GOOD. BE SAFE!!!

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