Q&A: Maricopa Ambulance CEO discusses citywide contract

Bryan Gibson

Maricopa Ambulance CEO Byran Gibson was contacted by the Scottsdale Independent to better understand the ins and outs of the pending ambulance services contract recently approved by Scottsdale City Council. This is what he had to say:

•Why did Maricopa Ambulance pursue the city of Scottsdale contract and why do you believe Maricopa Ambulance was chosen for the contract?

The city of Scottsdale is a progressive city with a fire department that deeply cares about emergency medical services and the health of its people, and we are excited to partner with them in the EMS system.

Maricopa Ambulance was formed following the approval from the Arizona Department of Health Services in October 2016 to provide medical transport services to hospitals and medical facilities and to compete for 9-1-1 contracts in the Valley. Maricopa Ambulance submitted a competitive proposal with technology upgrades to the current system and was selected as the best solution to the Scottsdale Fire Department’s needs.

•Is this a lucrative contract for Maricopa Ambulance?

Maricopa Ambulance is investing significant resources in the community to begin operations, and we are focused on building a system that provides the best emergency medical care and is financially sustainable to ensure the community continues to be properly resourced.

•There have been claims made that Maricopa Ambulance does not have paramedics onboard it’s ambulances thus an SFD paramedic will typically ride along during a call for service. Is that accurate?

The emergency medical response system is a true public-private partnership specifically designed for the Scottsdale Fire Department and Priority Ambulance to work together for the benefit of EMS system and the community as a whole.

The Scottsdale Fire Department has two paramedics and two EMTs on each fire truck, which arrive on-scene first in a majority of calls. Once the vehicle arrives on-scene, a Scottsdale firefighter paramedic will accompany the patient to the hospital on the Maricopa vehicle to ensure a continuity of care from first response to emergency department.

•Who will be onboard a Maricopa Ambulance when a call for service emerges next month in the city of Scottsdale?

Maricopa Ambulance vehicles will be staffed with two licensed EMTs. Once the vehicle arrives on-scene, a Scottsdale firefighter paramedic will accompany the patient to the hospital on the Maricopa vehicle to ensure a continuity of care from first response to the emergency department.

•What is the difference between an EMT and a paramedic?

Both EMTs and paramedics are professional prehospital care providers licensed through the state of Arizona and have the skills and knowledge to transport patients. EMTs can perform basic life support functions including CPR, oxygen administration, basic airway management, spinal immobilization, vital signs and bandaging/splinting. Paramedics have received additional training and are permitted to administer certain medications, ECG 12-lead administration and monitoring, as well as provide advance airway management, among other activities.

•There is a legal challenge to the contract approved by city council citing DHS requirements were not met by Maricopa Ambulance. Can you explain why that is not accurate?

The city of Scottsdale conducted a fair, thorough bid process for ambulance services. Maricopa Ambulance was proud to have been selected and is moving forward with its implementation schedule.

Every ambulance contract in the Valley requires approval by the Arizona Department of Health Services, and we currently are working with the ADHS for approval. Maricopa Ambulance will fully comply with the Arizona Department of Health requirements and will provide the City of Scottsdale with ambulance service that will best meets the needs in the community.

•What kind of service will be provided by Maricopa Ambulance to local residents when this contract goes into effect next month?

Maricopa Ambulance is honored to be have been selected as the ambulance service partner to the city of Scottsdale Fire Department. The community has trusted the Scottsdale Fire Department to provide advanced life support services for many years, and they will continue to provide exceptional paramedic-level service. Maricopa Ambulance is pleased to enhance the Scottsdale EMS system with 15 new state-of-the-art American-made ambulances, lifesaving medical equipment and professional, compassionate EMTs.

Editor’s note: Mr. Gibson is the CEO of Maricopa Ambulance

Northeast Valley Managing Editor Terrance Thornton can be contacted at tthornton@newszap.com

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