Commission shifts EMT service from under Sheriff's office
In the July 1 meeting of the Emery County Commission a decision was made to change the way the ambulance service is managed in the county. Commissioner Jeff Horrocks said a job description has been prepared to advertise for an ambulance supervisor. The duties are to include: Supervises and interprets program to paid volunteer staff members. Performs a variety of supervisory, administrative, organizational, and skilled duties related to budgeting, planning, organizing, grant proposal writing, fund-raising, scheduling, vehicle maintenance, education, training, and coordination of emergency medical services. Ambulance Supervisor is responsible for compliance with all applicable state and federal requirements regarding EMS certifications, licensing, and emergency vehicle operations and other pertinent laws and rules governing licensed EMS providers in the State of Utah. High school diploma or GED; and an Associate Degree preferred. Three years of experience in the delivery of Emergency Medical Service or an equivalent combination of education and experience. Working knowledge of EMS practices, injury management and OSHA regulations, Emery County policies and procedures, basic budgeting and budget management, understanding the principals of personnel management.
Good communication skills and the ability to communicate effectively using oral, written, and other electronic mediums. Computer skills and knowledge of basic computer software applications is valuable. Familiarity and experience with Incident Command/Management System.
Ability to respond quickly, appropriately and effectively to crisis situations, functions independently, maintain confidential materials and information and work with individuals from various economic and social backgrounds. Must have Utah EMT - Intermediate Certification. Must have a valid Utah drivers' license.
The ambulance service in Emery County was started by the Emery County Sheriff's Office 30 years ago. Horrocks said he believes this change will free up time in the sheriff's office for other duties. Sgt. Martin Wilson was assisting Sheriff Guymon with supervising the EMTs before he left the sheriff's office to take a state job. Sgt. Wilson's position has not been filled and currently his duties were all distributed among the other deputies and sergeants at the sheriff's office. Sheriff LaMar Guymon assumed total supervision of the EMTs after Sgt. Wilson left.
Horrocks said he believes the creation of a stand alone ambulance department is a positive action. The ambulance supervisor will report directly to the commission.
Commissioner Gary Kofford said he still had some concerns about the change. He said Sheriff Guymon put the ambulance service together and has created a respectable organization. Kofford said he has concerns about pulling it out from under the sheriff's office. He said the new department might have a tendancy to grow and costs will surely increase.
Kofford said the sheriff's office and the ambulance work together quite well and have done a good job. "It's not a slap in anyone's face. LaMar has done an excellent job."
Horrocks made a motion to create an ambulance department and Kofford seconded the motion.
In an interview with Sheriff LaMar Guymon following the decision to take the ambulance service from under the sheriff's office umbrella he said, "I don't agree with the idea that the ambulance service won't be under the sheriff's office because they work so closely together, and depend on each other so much and get along well with each other being one department. I appreciate so much the opportunity to have been a part of the creation of the ambulance service. We have worked closely over the years with the EMTs and I appreciate so much their service."
Editors note: At the time of this change of status with the ambulance service. The Emery County Progress was preparing a story on the EMTs and the need for more people to become certified EMTs. Even though the ambulance service has passed out of the sheriff's office direction. I feel the information contained within this article is still useful and pertinent to the continued success of the emergency services in Emery County so therefore that article is printed below:
Emery County EMTs
Emery County is facing a serious emergency medical situation. That situation is the shortage of emergency medical technicians in the county.
Every time someone calls an ambulance or the EMTs are paged out to a medical situation to help one of the county's residents during a fire or an accident, that ambulance must, by law, be staffed with three EMTs. The very real possibility looms that some towns in Emery County will very soon not have enough qualified people to run the ambulance service. Every EMT has taken extensive class work, tested and passed the required courses to treat people in emergencies.
Being an EMT is not something a person goes into to make a living. It is an honorable, courageous endeavour a person undertakes to help his fellow man. Service to fellow human beings is something that is on the down slide, and more often people do not feel they have the time to help. They pay for the courses and volunteer their time to take the courses.
When a person decides to take the courses, put in the time and money to become an EMT, they know they will be able to help someone, someday. Those who undertake this are to be commended and respected.
"We have excellent, excellent EMTs in Emery County," said Sheriff LaMar Guymon. Sheriff Guymon has recently taken over all supervision of the EMTs following the resignation of Sgt. Martin Wilson to take a state position. "We are in urgent need of more EMTs here.
"I am not sure why we are losing so many people. There is no doubt that Emery County is in trouble. I am commited to do whatever it takes to make sure the population of Emery County is covered in an emergency. I have been working on this dilemma and I will see that things are corrected," said Sheriff Guymon.
When asked how much the EMTs in Emery County make, Sheriff Guymon stated the pay rate for on call is very little. While the EMTs are on a run, the pay is fairly good. "No one is going to get rich being an EMT, but the rewards of the service to others is great," said Sheriff Guymon.
Volunteerism is waning in all parts of everyday life. Responsible citizens and residents of Emery County must step forward and ask themselves what can I do to help the community where I live. Becoming an EMT is not only a valuable service to the community, but there are important skills that come with the training.