Presque Isle -A new era in ambulance service in the Star City will officially begin on Monday, August 11, when Crown Emergency Care and the City of Presque Isle launch operations under a collaborative model approved this spring by the City Council and TAMC Board of Trustees. The tentative agreement, approved in May, was recently ratified by the unionized employees of Crown Emergency Care.
Under the new model, the Presque Isle Fire Department will provide a driver for Crown Emergency Care 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and house a Crown ambulance and a paramedic at the fire station. That arrangement will begin this coming Monday when a Crown Emergency Care vehicle and paramedic will be on-site at the Fire Station.
“We understand the difficult financial situation that both municipalities and healthcare organizations are faced with today. This agreement assures that both the citizens of Presque Isle and the surrounding communities have access to high quality paramedic care in the most cost effective manner possible,” said Daryl Boucher, TAMC director of emergency and critical care services. “TAMC continues to work with our community partners to explore innovative collaboration opportunities that benefit our patients. We cannot express how thankful we are to our friends and colleagues at the City, as well as to our EMS staff, who have been fully committed to finding a creative solution to a complex issue.”
The collaborative arrangement between the City of Presque Isle and Crown Emergency Care, a division of TAMC, follows several months of discussion and consideration of various proposals and models for ambulance coverage for the Star City. TAMC and City officials, as well as Presque Isle Fire Department and Crown Emergency Care leaders, worked collaboratively to craft a plan that would be beneficial to both parties and ensure the community retained the high level service currently provided.
“The challenge of delivering the same municipal services without requesting for additional property taxes is getting more difficult every year,” said Emily Smith, Presque Isle City Council Chair. “We are pleased that we have found another creative solution by working with Crown Emergency Care and TAMC. On behalf of the Council, we want to publicly thank them but also our City employees who embraced the opportunity to make this partnership possible.”
Boucher and Martin Puckett, Deputy City Manager, were the primary leads on a six member workgroup that drafted the collaborative service model. Others on the committee included Roland Joy, TAMC vice president of patient care services; Craig Green and Bruce Sargent, Presque Isle city councilors; and Darrell White, Presque Isle fire chief. Additionally, front line staff, including PIFD firefighters and Crown Emergency Care EMTs, were involved in ironing out the implementation details of the agreement.
Under the agreement, the combined crew of a member of the City’s professional firefighting team and a Crown Emergency Care paramedic will be the first to respond to a call in the Star City. The City/Crown Emergency Care crew will be responsible for second call in the communities of Washburn, Easton, Mapleton, Chapman, and Castle Hill. The Crown Emergency Care Presque Isle crew based at TAMC would continue to be the first crew called out in these surrounding communities.
Crown Emergency Care will continue its restructuring process to assure quicker response to 911 emergencies and inter-facility transfer requests. During fire calls in Presque Isle, PIFD will call in a volunteer firefighter crew to assure continued EMS and fire coverage in the city, and Crown staff will continue to respond to fire calls to provide medical care to firefighters if needed.