A program in the works to train Abilene firefighters to be paramedics could put the city in a position one day to take over emergency ambulance service from MetroCare.
While the city may not be gearing up to take over ambulance services from the private ambulance provider, Abilene Fire Department Chief Ken Dozier said the training would allow the department to do so if that decision was made by our elected officials.
My focus and goal is to have the AFD certified and trained to perform our first responder operations at the paramedic level, Dozier said. In other words, we want to be able to provide pre-hospital care at the highest level recognized by the Department of State Health Services ... we want to be the best we can be and perform at the highest level possible.
The program, which would train 48 Abilene firefighters over the next year or so, was included in a proposed 2009-10 budget that received preliminary City Council approval Wednesday.