BAD choice.. I know the guy who runs the department and some of the people who work there, and they have a top notch system.
It seems weird to me that they had to subsidize the service over $700,000. Maybe Lakewood EMS needs to look at their business and billing practices (if they DO bill). If a service needs that much financial assistance then a Private company is going to need SOME subsidy to operate.
It looks to me the council is wiping its hands of a bad mismanagement situation. By contracting a private service all billing goes to the patient or Medicaid so regardless of how The Press hedges its bets we're looking at a done deal here. Mother, Jugs and Speed should be looking for another job, the decision was made before any employee caught wind of it as always and replacements already lined up. Nothing is ever done in business on an if, might or maybe basis but always planned and executed in advance of any notice given.
No joke, Lakewood is but a shadow of its former self and New Jersey in financial crisis after years of mismanagement and corruption. As compared to other areas of the state life doesn't come cheap here at the shore either. We're in deep doo doo so BTW stop complaining about Taxachussettes and count your blessings.
By contracting with a private licensed company the costs to the government agency are fixed. There are of course the minimum service requirements in any such contract. The outsourcing of government work is being done all the time. Govt. aka the taxpayer has to tighten their belt.
I don't know how Lakewood's response time is but in Middletown I would say it is horrendous. We have five different volunteer EMS squads and during the day Mon-Fri standard protocol is to hit the all call instead of caling the squad that is closest to the call because of the lack of getting a squad out in a timely manner.
About 2 days ago their was a call and no one was responding so the dispatcher called 4 different towns for mutual aid and 46 minutes after the initial call came in no one was responding. At the time of the call the MONOC paramedics were unavailable. About an hour later after the initial call came in they were on the way to the hospital. Fortunately it was not a life threatening condition but had it been the person probably would have died.
Their was one time I called for the squad and a LEO showed up as standard protocol and he had said they have one squad available that is at the hospital and could come for the call if you want them. At that point I told him I will have someone drive me their because by the time they get here I can be their already so that's what I wound up doing.
Years ago I was at the firehouse helping out getting ready for a wedding reception in our hall and I was using the meat slicer and in doing so cut my finger. The EMS shows up kind of quickly because they were out doing a fund drive. They bandaged up my finger and I needed to go to the hospital so instead of them taking me they told me to drive myself their because they were in the middle of doing a fund drive and wanted to get back to that. It was my right index finger and I had to keep it elevated. My car was a four speed stick so in order to keep my arm elevated I took my left hand off the wheel and would shift then put my left hand back on the wheel to steer.
If Lakewood has problems getting the volunteers out for a call then the residents of Lakewood deserve better service even if they are billed directly for it.
I'm sorry to hear about your problems in Middletown. Many Ocean County communities (Toms River, Brick, and the Seasides to name a few) have already dealt with it by instituting municipal Paid Services.
The thing to remember is, Lakewood did it first. Lakewood is not looking to disband its volunteer EMS system, I dont even know if it still exists. They are talking about disbanding their PAID Municipal EMS Department.
The EMTs working for Lakewood EMS were forced by the town to take a 30% Pay cut, and their jobs are only safe until January 1, 2011.
for someone making say $35,000 a year gross, that is a crying shame. the entire state is hurting at the volunteer level, especially ems wise. i remember about 30 year's ago, a volunteer with the perth amboy ems told me that they had so many memeber's that their duty crew only came up about once a month.
he said people dropped off because of inactivity.now look at it. almost every call you hear for keansburg/middletown goes to mutual aid. i was told that middletown was going to start soliciting bid's for paid service. the city of long branch went paid ems,and it's worked out real well. the rig is usually on scene in minute's.