Bergen establishes countywide EMS unit

The Bergen County Board of Commissioners approved a resolution establishing a Bergen County Emergency Medical Services Unit which will assist local EMS agencies with mutual aid 911 medical calls.

Earlier this year, Bergen County Executive Jim Tedesco says he convened a working group to evaluate EMS services in Bergen County. The group determined additional services are warranted. Over the last few years, several local EMS agencies have had to close because of difficulty recruiting and retaining volunteer members, placing a burden on existing EMS services.

 “As a first responder, I understand how critical it is to always be prepared,” Tedesco said. “Our local Emergency Medical Service professionals sometimes need help in delivering medical care to their residents due to staffing issues and high volume calls. So it makes sense for the County of Bergen to step in and provide backup service and assistance to those communities that need an extra hand.

“The care EMS professionals provide in their local communities is much broader than traditional emergent first response and transport. EMS is providing emergent, urgent and preventive care to patients as an integrated component of their community’s healthcare system, and it makes sense for the county to be a part of that service and that solution going forward so that we can help provide the best possible care to all of our residents.”

The Bergen County Emergency Medical Services Unit will only provide mutual aid services throughout the county. The primary mission of the unit will be to provide additional ambulances around the county to maintain the continuity of EMS services in the event a municipality’s primary EMS unit is busy handling another call.

Following the approval of the resolution, the county began the process to procure ambulances and other equipment to support the new service.

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