CFD moving out 3-11-16

Stamford Paramedics Approved for Darien EMS-Post 53, with Housing on Post Road

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The Board of Selectmen on Tuesday approved a proposal to hire Stamford Emergency Medical Services (SEMS) as a provider of paramedics to Darien EMS-Post 53. First Selectman Jayme Stevenson said town officials are looking into housing the paramedics at the town-owned house the Darien Community Fund used to use, next to Old Town Hall Homes at 701 Post Road. At the board’s regular meeting on Tuesday, Stevenson proposed dispensing with the town going through a request for proposals in preparation for bids to provide the service. Having in-town paramedics, long a controversial proposal pushed by town resident Walter Casey and criticized by Darien Emergency Medical Services-Post 53 officials, was recommended earlier this year in a report by Illinois consultants McGrath Consulting Group, who were hired by the town. Dr. Douglas Gallo, medical director for both Stamford Emergency Medical Services and Darien EMS-Post 53, has said, according to the consultants, that in-town paramedics would provide “no clinical benefit over the existing paramedic arrangement, it would not be cost-effective, and infrequency of paramedic skill usage would result in skill deterioration.”

Post 53 Darien EMS

Darien EMS Consultants: Post 53 Should Stop Delaying Some Arrivals on I-95

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Consultants hired by the town to evaluate Darien EMS-Post 53 say the ambulance service shouldn’t be waiting for fire trucks before getting to the scenes of Interstate 95 medical emergencies. The Illinois-based McGrath Consulting Group is on the agenda for Monday night’s 7 p.m. Board of Selectmen meeting, where the consultants will officially present the report (full text here) to selectmen. Darien TV79 plans to show the meeting on Cablevision Channel 79 and on the Internet. Right now, Darien EMS-Post 53 has a policy that ambulances will wait on highway on-ramps for fire trucks to get to emergency scenes first, according to the report (all quotes in this article are from page 49 of the report). The Director of Post 53 [Ron Hammer] was adamant that no member would be required to respond onto Interstate 95 until the fire department arrived first to provide additional protection from traffic; as stated in their operational protocols.

Darien EMS - Post 53 sign 4-3-16

Consultant: Darien Should Streamline Dispatching for Medical Emergencies

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Darien EMS-Post 53 ambulances could get to medical emergencies in Darien quicker if the town made changes in the way it handles 911 calls, according to consultants hired by the town. The “McGrath Report” posted on the town website Friday from the McGrath Consulting Group, based in Illinois, looked into how Darien provides emergency medical services and made various recommendations for improvements. Much of the report delved into whether paramedics should be based within the town (the consultants recommended it). The second-most emphatic recommendation in the report was that Darien should change the way it handles 911 calls for medical emergencies in order to cut down the time it takes to dispatch Darien EMS-Post 53 to them. The consultants want dispatcher based in the Darien Police Headquarters building to immediately mute the phone and transfer emergency 911 callers to the Bridgeport-based “C-Med” dispatching service that the town uses.

Darien EMS-Post 53 Post 53 34-2-16

Consultant: Darien Should Have Paramedics Stationed in Town

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Darien EMS-Post 53 should have a paramedic on duty at all times in town, contracted from an organization and based at Post 53 headquarters on Ledge Road, say the EMS consultants hired by the town. The lack of a paramedic based in town increases average response time for paramedics (from the time dispatchers inform the ambulance service of an emergency to arrival time at the scene), the report from McGrath Consultants said. It takes, on average, 5 minutes, 53 seconds for a Darien EMS-Post 53 ambulance to arrive at the scene after being dispatched. For the current paramedics coming in from Stamford, it takes 9 minutes, 21 seconds, according to the report. That’s a difference of 3 minutes, 28 seconds (9:21 — 5:53 = 3:28).