I generally do not comment on someone’s printed opinion in a letter to the editor, however, after reading the opinion of Ted Paulk titled “Maybe we should trade some fire trucks for an ambulance or two” in this last Friday’s edition, I find that I must correct a misinformed citizen.
The Arizona Department of Health Services regulates all ambulance companies in the state of Arizona, and has since the constitutional amendment was passed in 1982. This regulation is at a higher standard than even the regulation of utilities.
The Arizona Department of Health Services regulates the area of operation, the times of operation, the level of operation, the charges for services, they inspect every ambulance in the state annually and may investigate all matters concerning an ambulance service. If a company has been found to be fit and proper (this concerns many areas of experience), it is granted a license to operate.
Thus with the above information, every ambulance must at a minimum staff at least two certified emergency medical technicians on every ambulance. LifeStar Ambulance bought Canyon State Ambulance in 2001, which at that time, Canyon State Ambulance staffed only one ambulance for the entire Rim Country.
Since that time, LifeStar Ambulance has increased the number of available ambulances to between four and five depending on the time of year and the needs of the area. LifeStar Ambulance’s service area is all of the Rim Country, which is approximately 4,000 square miles.
Every ambulance is staffed with highly qualified certified emergency medical technicians and paramedics at the same level of training as all of the fire departments in Rim Country. LifeStar Ambulance responds to approximately 6,500 calls per year, as either emergency medical calls or inter-facility transports from either the hospital or from local nursing homes.
I will not comment on the remainder of his opinion on the fire department, although I am sure that he is also misinformed on that subject.
Charlie Smith, CEO,