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Old 08-26-2012, 2:53 PM
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Default Boston FD Medical Calls

Anyone know why BFD sends a district chief on medical calls? I've recently noticed that nearly EVERY medical call gets assigned a unit + a chief...anyone know why this is?
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Old 08-26-2012, 3:00 PM
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Probably just a new protocol.
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Old 08-26-2012, 3:42 PM
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They don't. While they are toned out and included on CAD, they don't go. It's just a way for the BFD to inflate their run totals for the year. It's the same way with the NFIRS codes. They use 321, even if they are waved off by the EMS crew and never see the patient, when they should use a 500 series code.

Since 80% of their runs are EMS related, it's the best place to pad the numbers.
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Old 08-26-2012, 7:08 PM
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I see, so basically when the run totals come in they can say car 9 had 1500 runs even though they only actually went to 400 calls.

I guess its their way of trying to justify that station/apparatus?

Could this be the same reason they rotate which units go on medical calls? For instance, E37 this month but next month L26. This way it looks like, even if L26 doesn't get many runs, it looks like they're getting more since they rotate with the engine?

Also, is that reflected in the overall stats for the city? Or just for each unit? To be more clear, when they count their runs for the city totals at the end of the year, do they keep track based on the number of incidents or the number of responses? That is, a working fire..is that one call or 8 responses? Or does that depend on how they do a particular set of stats?
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Old 08-26-2012, 10:19 PM
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They alternate months so that everyone gets exposure to medical calls. I don't know how they parse their response numbers other than in some cases they will get two incident numbers for one run. For example, a motor vehicle accident with injuries and a liquid spill will get a 321 for any aid they give and a 400 series code for the spill clean up.

I'm not singling out Boston here, I wouldn't be surprised if other fire departments do similar creative book keeping to make their numbers look good.




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Originally Posted by oc911emsandfire View Post
I see, so basically when the run totals come in they can say car 9 had 1500 runs even though they only actually went to 400 calls.

I guess its their way of trying to justify that station/apparatus?

Could this be the same reason they rotate which units go on medical calls? For instance, E37 this month but next month L26. This way it looks like, even if L26 doesn't get many runs, it looks like they're getting more since they rotate with the engine?

Also, is that reflected in the overall stats for the city? Or just for each unit? To be more clear, when they count their runs for the city totals at the end of the year, do they keep track based on the number of incidents or the number of responses? That is, a working fire..is that one call or 8 responses? Or does that depend on how they do a particular set of stats?
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Old 08-27-2012, 9:21 PM
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"Could this be the same reason they rotate which units go on medical calls? For instance, E37 this month but next month L26. This way it looks like, even if L26 doesn't get many runs, it looks like they're getting more since they rotate with the engine?"

Logic alert! Logic alert!
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Old 08-28-2012, 7:56 AM
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Believe as you will, since most people do, but that's not the reason. As I said earlier, the powers that be at BFD wanted everyone to get exposure to medical calls. It started out with ladder trucks doing medical calls on Saturdays only, "Saturday is Ladder Day!". Then it expanded to alternate months as it is now.

The other factor was that senior men were transferring to ladder trucks and other units that didn't do medical calls since those units weren't running their butts off all night long. So, a sort of load balancing was put into effect. One month ladders (and the Rescues) would go, the next Engines would go. August is an Engine month, in case anyone is really interested.

Also, if the first due Engine is on a call, now the ladder is sent instead of the second due Engine.

For those who are really interested, Engine 21 in Edward Everett Square does the most medical calls. At one point they were called "Ambulance 21", but since Boston EMS has one now (on some days), they are affectionately called "Engine 321".
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Old 08-28-2012, 8:22 AM
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I know here in new bedford, each ladder and each engine alternate medical calls. If ladder 1 gets a medical call first the next one goes to engine 1. That goes for the same for the rest of the companies. We now have 5 ambulances on at the same time too. Before it used to be just 3 and 3 contract companies. So now we got 5 ambulances and 3 private companies.
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