PLYMPTON, Mass. — Big changes to Plympton’s ambulance service are coming thanks to the passing of several articles at Town Meeting allocating money and resources to make the leap from basic service to advanced.
At the beginning of the Annual Town Meeting Wednesday, May 15, Ambulance Study Committee Chairman Max West told residents the chronology of the study committee and how they got to their recommendation to upgrade services in town. He said that in November the group got together and examined a plethora of data including number of runs, response time, run frequency and other financial aspects like cost per run, costs associated with utilizing commercial services and more.
Currently, Plympton utilizes a basic level of service, meaning that when a Plympton ambulance responds to a call there is only a limited number of functions EMT’s/paramedics can perform before having to call a commercial provider like to step in and provide additional service. Plympton is one of the very few towns in the area not at an advanced level of service.
“Plympton does need to provide advanced life support,” West said. “Right now we are not providing ALS service in Plympton, they are handled by commercial providers like Brewster or AMR.”
One of the hurdles to overcome to bring Plympton to advanced life support service is to find a way to overcome the fire station’s many issues. To do this the committee proposed, and the town approved, an article for the town to use up to $75,000 to purchase or lease a mobile housing unit for firefighters and EMT’s/paramedics to utilize so that the town can have 24/7 services.
The station itself is in violation of many codes according to Fire Chief Warren Borsari and would not be able to secure an occupancy permit so the mobile unit is key so that Plympton can upgrade services while improvements to the fire station are planned and made.
Another big article that passed was the allocation of $255,000 to purchase and equip and ambulance with the necessary materials for an advanced life support vehicle.
A few residents spoke out about the need for the upgrade in service. One resident said that he survived a massive heart attack in town but would not have if the AMR ambulance wasn’t already in town at the time.
Another resident, who lives at The Woodlands, said that she had an experience in an ambulance where they had to stop so she could be transferred to another, equipped vehicle. She said that with the large senior population in town this upgrade is surely needed.
The town agreed, passing all of the articles presented to allocate additional funds and resources to the EMS department, including wages for firefighters and paramedics and supplies.
“This is a very important move for the town,” Borsari said. “And is money well spent.”