2010 NEWS ARCHIVES

Latest News

December 17, 2010 - New Policies Effective January 1, 2011

EMS Policy 2570 Paramedic Preceptors and EMS Policy 2571 Paramedic Intern, will be effective January 1, 2011. These policies are posted on the Policies web page under Section 2000 Personnel and Training. Click here for the ALS Provider Memorandum. Click here for the Paramedic Training Program Memorandum. For those paramedics that have NOT been approved as preceptors but have an intern assigned to them who began their field internship prior to January 1, 2011, they will be allowed to continue with their interns until that intern has passed or failed the field internship. Those paramedics will not be authorized to take any additional students until they have been authorized to be a Paramedic Preceptor in accordance with EMS Policy 2570. After January 1, 2011, students applying for internship in San Joaquin County must follow EMS Policy 2571.

December 17, 2010 - EMS Policy Memorandum 2010-04, Bariatric Patient Transports

EMS Policy Memorandum 2010-04, Bariatric Patient Transports has been added to the Policies web page in the Policy Memorandum section. This policy memorandum provides clarification and direction to prehospital care providers and personnel. See memorandum for complete information.

December 17, 2010 - EMS Policy Memorandum 2010-03, Patient Care Records (PCR)

EMS Policy Memorandum 2010-03, Patient Care Records (PCR) has been added to the Policies web page in the Policy Memorandum section. This policy memorandum reiterates that all attending paramedics on a call must complete a PCR for each patient contact. See memorandum for complete information.

December 17, 2010 - Holiday Office Closure

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency office will be closed Friday, December 24, 2010 through Friday, December 31, 2010. The office will re-open with normal office hours Monday, January 3, 2011.

December 17, 2010 - AMR Compliance Report for September 2010 and October 2010

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency has completed its evaluation of American Medical Response's for September and October 2010 performance under their five year contract to provide exclusive emergency ambulance service. The AMR contract establishes accountability for meeting specific standards and provides the EMS Agency with complete access to data and information on AMR's operational, clinical, and administrative performance. Click here to view AMR's September 2010 and October 2010 compliance report.

December 17, 2010 - Medical Preparedness & Response to Bombing Incidents Course

A Medical Preparedness & Response to Bombing Incidents Course has been coordinated by San Joaquin County EMS Agency and is scheduled for November 9-10, 2011. This course is intended for EMS Personnel, Emergency Room Personnel, Nurse's Physicians, Trauma Surgeons, Emergency Managers, and Hospital Administrators. American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) and IACET offer 1.6 CEUs. 16 hours of EMS and BRN CE will be offered. Provider is approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing, Provider Number 1524 for 16 contact hours. CA EMS CE provided by San Joaquin County EMS Agency CEP# 39-0001.

December 10, 2010 - Holiday Office Closure

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency office will be closed Monday, December 20, 2010, at 12:00 pm (noon). The office will re-open with normal office hours Tuesday, December 21, 2010.

December 3, 2010 - EMS Providers: 2011 EMS Form No. 2011A is due December 10, 2010

This is a reminder that per EMS Policy 2011, Skills Competency Verification Process, authorized organizations shall annually complete and submit to the EMS Agency EMS Form No. 2011A Individuals Designated to Verify Skills Competency. EMS Form No. 2011A shall be submitted no later than the second Friday of December each year.

November 24, 2010 - Ham Radio Licensing Class

Three "HAM CRAM" Ham Radio Licensing Training classes have been scheduled for: Thursday, December 9, 2010; Wednesday, March 30, 2011; and Wednesday June 22, 2011. This class is FREE and open to all San Joaquin County hospitals, clinics, long term care providers, ALS ambulance providers, and Disaster Healthcare Volunteers. It is funded by the 2010-2011 Hospital Preparedness Program (HPP) Grant. This class is organized in cooperation with the San Joaquin County Amateur Radio Emergency Service. Click here for flyer and additional information. Click here to register.

November 12, 2010 - Statewide Medical and Health Exercise Scheduled for Thursday, November 18, 2010

San Joaquin County EMS Agency will be participating in the Statewide Medical and Health Functional Exercise that will be conducted on November 18, 2010. Normal business practices will not be interrupted. San Joaquin County Hospitals and Clinics will be participating in this exercise with field simulation this scenario will involve multiple Improvised Explosive Devices throughout California. If you have any questions please contact Phil Cook at 209-468-6818.

November 12, 2010 - Holiday Office Closure

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency office will be closed Thursday, November 25, 2010, and Friday November 26, 2010 and will re-open with normal office hours Monday, November 29, 2010.

November 12, 2010 - EMS Providers: Reminder of EMS Form No. 2011A

This is a reminder that per EMS Policy 2011, Skills Competency Verification Process, authorized organizations shall annually complete and submit to the EMS Agency EMS Form No. 2011A Individuals Designated to Verify Skills Competency. EMS Form No. 2011A shall be submitted no later than the second Friday of December each year.

November 12, 2010 - EMS Certification/Accreditation/Authorization Applications

New applications effective January 1, 2011, have been add to the website. All older versions of applications will not be accepted after January 1, 2011. In addition, due to the upcoming holiday schedule, ALL Applications submitted after December 17, 2010, will NOT be processed until January 2011. Policy requires applications be submitted no later than thirty (30) days prior to expiration. If you have any questions, please contact Kevin O'Loughlin, Sr., MICP.

October 29, 2010 - AMR Compliance Report for July 2010 and August 2010

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency has completed its evaluation of American Medical Response's for July and August 2010 performance under their five year contract to provide exclusive emergency ambulance service. The AMR contract establishes accountability for meeting specific standards and provides the EMS Agency with complete access to data and information on AMR's operational, clinical, and administrative performance. Click here to view AMR's July 2010 and August 2010 compliance report.

October 29, 2010 - Holiday Office Closure

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency office will be closed Thursday, November 11, 2010 and will re-open with normal office hours Friday, November 12, 2010.

October 18, 2010 - EMS Holiday Office Schedule/Hours

As the end of the year is fast approaching the EMS Agency would like to share with you the holiday season office closure's. Please click here for the memorandum or visit the Upcoming Trainings & Events page for the 2011 schedule. Please note: ALL applications submitted after December 17, 2010, will not be processed until January 2011. Policy requires applications be submitted no later than thirty (30) days prior to expiration. Please contact Christine Tualla at (209) 468-6818 or ctualla@sjgov.org if you have any questions.

October 8, 2010 - Revised Policies

Revised policies effective October 15, 2010, and December 1, 2010, have been posted on the Policies page. Please take time to read all Policies and become aware of all the changes. If you have any questions, please contact Kevin O'Loughlin, Sr., MICP at (209) 468-6818 or by email at koloughlin@sjgov.org.

October 1, 2010 – Tentative Agreement Between San Joaquin County and the City of Stockton

San Joaquin County and the City of Stockton have reached a tentative agreement which settles all of the EMS litigation between the County and the City. If approved by the Board of Supervisors and the City Council at their respective meetings next Tuesday, the Stockton Fire Department will be authorized to begin providing paramedic service on Wednesday, October 6, 2010, at 0700 hours. The Stockton Police Department will begin transferring 911 medical calls to the County's designated EMS dispatch center on December 1, 2010, as originally envisioned in the County's EMS Plan adopted in 2005.

The City and the County have agreed to accept the results of the trial court's decisions regarding the County's authority to direct the transfer of 911 medical callers; the City's obligation to protect the confidentiality of continuous quality improvement (CQI) documents; and the complete integration of the City's paramedic service into the County's EMS system.

As part of the settlement agreement the County and City agree to pay their own legal costs. Through June of this year, the City of Stockton has spent over $4 million in legal fees on the three EMS cases.

Read the joint County-City press release >>

Read the proposed settlement agreement >>

October 1, 2010 – Governor Schwarzenegger vetoes AB2456

Governor Schwarzenegger vetoes AB2456, agreeing with San Joaquin County, Los Angeles County, the EMS Administrators Association of California, the Emergency Medical Directors Association of California, and other concerned counties and organizations opposing AB2456. The Governor's veto message states:

To the Members of the California State Assembly: I am returning Assembly Bill 2456 without my signature. This bill is unnecessary because the Emergency Medical Services Authority currently has the ability to promulgate regulations to administer a statewide emergency response system. California's diverse geography and population demands a greater degree of flexibility that this bill cannot provide. For this reason, I cannot sign this measure.

Sincerely,
Arnold Schwarzenegger

Read the veto message >>

Read the bill >>

October 1, 2010 - Rescheduled Nerve Agent Training – Seats still available

Nerve Agent training is being conducted by the San Joaquin County EMS Agency and San Joaquin General Hospital on November 30, 2010, from 1300 to 1700 at San Joaquin General Hospital in the Doctor's Dining Room. Topics to be covered include: CHEMPACK (what is it and how do I get it), Nerve Agents & Antidotes, DMS Triage Tag Hands-on Practice utilizing Mark I Kits. There will be multiple guest speakers and 4 hours of EMS and BRN CE will be offered. Provider is approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing, Provider Number 1524 for 4 contact hours. EMS CE will be provided by San Joaquin County EMS Agency CEP #39-0001. For more information view the class flyer. To register please visit the Upcoming Trainings & Events page.

September 23, 2010 - REACH on Tour Conference

The REACH on Tour conference will be at San Joaquin General Hospital on Saturday, November 13, 2010. The cost to attend is $25.00 which includes continental breakfast. If you are interested in attending, please call 888-660-9888, email conferences@REACHair.com, or visit the REACH website at www.REACHair.com. Note the deadline for registration is Monday, November 8, 2010. Sign up early to reserve your seat. Click here for additional information.

September 10, 2010 - EMS Medical Director's Opening Remarks From the News Conference Regarding Prehospital Care Held 9/9/2010 in Stockton

Good Morning. My name is Richard Buys and I am the EMS Medical Director for San Joaquin County.

I first started answering the paramedic radio in the ER of San Joaquin General Hospital in 1978 during my residency there. In 1982, I became the medical director of that ER, where I continue to work in that capacity to this day. In 1984, when the EMS agency became a division of San Joaquin County Health Care Services, I was appointed its medical director. Except for a few years in the 1990's, I have been in that position ever since.

I have served as the president of the EMS Medical Director's Association of California (EMDAC) and was the lead author of the California statewide field treatment guidelines, the writing of which lead to statewide certification of paramedics.

I tell you this because I believe I have the credibility to say what I am about to say and have it stand on its own merit, with no confusion about my motivations.

The local EMS medical director's job is to provide medical control and to assure medical accountability throughout the planning, implementation and evaluation of the EMS system. Many of us, if not all of us, who hold this responsibility look at this as putting our medical licenses on the line each and every time there is any medical emergency prompting a citizen to access the EMS system. We only do this because we believe we have the authority to enforce the application of the standards we approve.

In 2006, the City of Stockton challenged that authority after an unsuccessful bid to become the sole ambulance provider and emergency medical dispatcher for San Joaquin County and again when they refused to sign a new ALS agreement. In both instances, the City is telling me that they have rights that supersede the authority of the local EMS agency and its medical director to assure medical accountability.

That brings us to the issue at hand - the status of the Stockton Fire Department as an ALS Provider.

Much has been made of the perception, promulgated by the City and Stockton Fire, that the citizens served in the past by Stockton Fire as an ALS provider are no longer safe or as safe in a medical emergency. That is simply not the case. You are as safe as any citizen of Lodi and Tracy and every other citizen of every other town in San Joaquin county and as safe as the citizens of Modesto and Fresno and the many other cities and towns in California with a similar EMS system.

With all due respect, fire chiefs and paramedics do not practice medicine – physicians do. And it is physicians who establish the standard of care. It is irresponsible for unqualified people to tell the citizenry that they are unsafe in a medical emergency.

I'd also like to make something very clear and I cannot emphasize this enough. Basic Life Support has been bandied about as if it represents some lower and limited level of care. Basic Life Support is fundamental care. It is what we do in the first 3-5 minutes of every encounter with a patient whether in the field or in the ER to assess and treat the most immediate life threatening conditions affecting airway, breathing, bleeding and circulation. The worst errors of omission in patient care often involve errors in Basic Life Support.

Many EMS Medical Directors believe we probably do too much ALS. In fact, as EMS systems begin to further analyze and digest their data and publish their results, we are seeing a trend of opinion supported by this data, that more paramedics on scene is not only not better but may actually be worse on patient outcomes further emphasizing the importance of Basic Life Support in prehospital patient care.

So let me make it very clear. The provision of Basic Life Support care by the Stockton Fire Department is not a lowering of the quality of patient care. Regardless of who gets there first, the first 3-5 minutes of every call is used to provide Basic Life Support care and we know from looking at Stockton Fire and AMR data that, on average, response times for both providers is less than 5 minutes and the difference in arrival times between the two is 33 seconds.

Somewhere on somebody's desk in City Hall sits an enforceable ALS agreement that assures the County of the City's desire to be a fully integrated part of the EMS system. Now it is up to the City Council to decide if they wish to provide ALS first response by the Stockton Fire Department.

September 9, 2010 - Stockton Fails to Sign ALS Agreement

It is the County of San Joaquin's desire that the City of Stockton will take the steps needed to be authorized to provide advanced life support (ALS) service as a fully integrated component of the San Joaquin County emergency medical services (EMS) system.

In July 2010, San Joaquin County provided the City of Stockton with an agreement that would have allowed the Stockton Fire Department to continue to provide paramedic service without interruption. The City of Stockton chose not to execute this agreement with the County. In fact the City of Stockton has yet to provide a counter-proposal to the County.

State law specifies that "no person or organization shall provide advanced life support or limited advanced life support unless that person or organization is an authorized part of the emergency medical services system of the local EMS agency." Paramedics do not work independently. Paramedics in San Joaquin County work directly under the medical license of the physician medical director of the San Joaquin County EMS Agency, Dr. Richard N. Buys, M.D.

All of the ALS providers in San Joaquin County (American Medical Response, Manteca District Ambulance, Escalon Ambulance, Ripon Fire District, City of Tracy Fire Department, Priority-1 Medical Transport) have a written agreement with San Joaquin County authorizing their service. Each of San Joaquin County's authorized ALS providers has agreed to follow the same set of rules and to work together as a cohesive integrated system for the delivery of quality prehospital patient care.

The City of Stockton needs only to agree to be fully integrated into the County's EMS system in order to restore the Stockton Fire Department's ability to provide paramedic service. San Joaquin County continues to wait to receive a meaningful response to the agreement provided to the City weeks ago.

American Medical Response (AMR) is providing emergency ambulance and paramedic service to the City of Stockton. The Stockton Fire Department (SFD) is currently authorized to provide basic life support (BLS) or emergency medical technician (EMT) level service. By working together the SFD and AMR are able to provide the citizen's of Stockton with same fast, efficient, and high quality patient care that is provided throughout San Joaquin County, including the cities and communities of Lodi, Lathrop, Manteca, Escalon, Clements, Woodbridge, Lockeford and Linden. In fact many EMS systems in California and throughout the nation are provided as a combination of BLS fire department response and paramedic ambulance service including the cities of Fresno, Modesto, Bakersfield, and Merced.

Every EMS call begins as a BLS call with the first 3 to 5 minutes consisting of primary and secondary assessments, focusing on the ABC's (airway, breathing, circulation), and preparing the patient for ALS care and transport, if needed. EMTs are trained to care for all types of cardiac, medical, trauma, behavioral, and obstetric emergencies. EMTs can provide critical life saving skills including cardiac defibrillation, delivering newborn babies, administering glucose, and assisting patients with taking nitroglycerine, epinephrine, and other medications.

An analysis of available data from the SFD dispatch center and the AMR dispatch center from July 2009 through May 20101, comparing more than 17,000 dispatch records reveals that the SFD and AMR arrive on average within 33 seconds of one another to medical emergencies within the City of Stockton. The overall average response time for the SFD during this time period was 4 minutes and 9 seconds. The overall average response time for AMR during this time period was 4 minutes and 42 seconds.


1Data for the months of November 2009, January 2010, and March 2010 are excluded because the SFD did not provide this data to the EMS Agency.

August 27, 2010 - Stockton Fire Department Transitions to Basic Life Support on September 1, 2010

The agreement between San Joaquin County and the City of Stockton authorizing the Stockton Fire Department (SFD) to provide advanced life support (ALS) services expires on September 1, 2010, at 0700. To allow for continuity in patient care the EMS Agency will authorize SFD paramedics that have initiated patient care prior to 0700 to continue to provide ALS care until patient care is transferred to emergency department personnel or to the transport paramedic. The EMS Agency anticipates the Stockton Fire Department's cooperation in a smooth transition to basic life support (BLS) service. Click here to read the memorandum.

August 27, 2010 - Holiday Office Closure

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency office will be closed Monday, September 6, 2010, and will re-open with normal office hours Tuesday, September 7, 2010.

August 27, 2010 - EMS Liaison Committee Meeting Cancelled

The EMS Liaison Committee Meeting scheduled for September 8, 2010 has been cancelled. The next meeting is scheduled for November 10, 2010. To view the EMS Liaison Committee Meeting schedule please visit the Committees web page.

August 27, 2010 - AMR Compliance Report for May 2010 and June 2010

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency has completed its evaluation of American Medical Response's for May and June 2010 performance under their five year contract to provide exclusive emergency ambulance service. The AMR contract establishes accountability for meeting specific standards and provides the EMS Agency with complete access to data and information on AMR's operational, clinical, and administrative performance. Click here to view AMR's May 2010 and June 2010 compliance report.

August 27, 2010 - Revised Policies

Revised policies effective August 31, 2010, and September 1, 2010, have been posted on the Policies page. Please take time to read all Policies and become aware of all the changes. If you have any questions, please contact Kevin O'Loughlin, Sr., MICP at (209) 468-6818 or by email at koloughlin@sjgov.org.

August 27, 2010 - Draft Policy Available For Public Review

The EMS Agency is soliciting public comments on a revised EMS Policy. The draft policy available for public comment may be viewed or downloaded from the Draft Policies web page.

Please submit your comments or suggestions using the comment forms provided on the Draft Policies web page no later than 5 PM, October 1, 2010. Completed comment forms may be submitted by email to Christine Tualla at ctualla@sjgov.org or by U.S. Mail to the San Joaquin County EMS Agency, PO Box 220, French Camp, CA 95231.

August 20, 2010 - EMS Office Hours for August 30, 2010

On Monday, August 30, 2010, the EMS Office hours will be modified. The business hours for this day will be 8:00 AM to 10:30 AM and 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM. Normal office hours will resume on Tuesday, August 31, 2010.

August 20, 2010 - New and Revised Policies

New and revised Policies effective August 20, 2010, have been posted on the Policies page. Click here for the memorandum which lists Policies that have been added and updated. Please take time to read all Policies and become aware of all the changes. If you have any questions, please contact Kevin O'Loughlin, Sr., MICP at (209) 468-6818 or by email at koloughlin@sjgov.org.

August 20, 2010 - Space still available in the Paramedic Preceptor Training Courses

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency is conducting three (3) paramedic preceptor training courses beginning in September 2010. To view requirements, dates, times and locations, click here to view the flyer. Up to eight (8) hours of Prehospital CE will be provided by the EMS Agency.

August 20, 2010 - Space Still available in the Nerve Agent Training

Nerve Agent training is being conducted by the San Joaquin County EMS Agency and San Joaquin General Hospital on October 12, 2010 from 1300 to 1700. Topics to be covered include: CHEMPACK (what is it and how do I get it), Nerve Agents & Antidotes, DMS Triage Tag Hands-on Practice utilizing Mark I Kits. There will be multiple guest speakers and 4 hours of BRN and prehospital CE will be provided. For more information view the class flyer.

August 13, 2010 - 2010/2011 Healthcare Ham Radio Communications Drill Schedule

Click here for the 2010-2011 San Joaquin County Healthcare Ham Radio Communication Drill schedule. All licensed operators are welcome to participate. Many of these drills will involve message passing using the San Joaquin County Hospital Status Report Form and the Clinic Status Report Form. For more information contact Phil Cook, Disaster Medical Health Specialist (KI6OAG), at pcook@sjgov.org or (209) 468-6818 or David Coursey, ARES Emergency Coordinator (N5FDL), at n5fdl@arrl.net. The Ham Radio Communication Drill schedule is also posted on the Emergency Preparedness web page.

August 6, 2010 - FREE Special State Funded Tdap Vaccine (Tetanus and Whooping Cough Shot) Clinics for Teens 16 and Up and Adults

Free special Tdap clinics (Tetanus and Whooping Cough Shot) will be run by "Maxim" in August and September. Click here for the flyer. These clinics won't be convenient for everyone - Maxim will only vaccinate older teens and adults (>16 yrs). Unfortunately Public Health wasn't able to arrange a clinic in Tracy, and all of the Stockton clinics will occur during school hours. Other options for students, staff, and family to obtain Tdap/DTaP include seeing their regular doctor, going to a CMC clinic, or coming to PHS if their regular doctor doesn't carry Tdap or if they're uninsured. Please pass along this flyer and info on these special clinics so that more in our community can get vaccinated to reduce the spread of pertussis.

For more info on pertussis, please check out the following websites, San Joaquin County Public Health website http://www.sjcphs.org, California Department of Public Health's website, http://www.cdph.ca.gov/HealthInfo/discond/Pages/Pertussis.aspx, or contact San Joaquin County Public Health at 209-468-3822.

July 23, 2010 - California EMS Authority Central Registry

The new public access EMT and Paramedic Central Registry is now available. The Central Registry allows anyone to check the current license/certification status of EMT's and Paramedic's in California. As a result of the new Central Registry all EMT's in California have been assigned a new California EMT Central Registry number. You may view the Central Registry at http://www.centralregistry.ca.gov/. The new registry does not impact the validity of current San Joaquin County certifications. For additional questions, contact Christine Tualla at 209-468-6818.

July, 16, 2010 - Employment Opportunity

LIFECOM is currently recruiting for a Dispatch Academy. Both Full-Time and Part-Time positions are available. Applications can be picked up in person or downloaded from www.amr.net. Should you have any questions you please contact Kevin Pagenkop at (209) 236-8356.

July 16, 2010 - ALS Skills Days 2010 - 2011

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency in cooperation with all our ALS providers has developed a training schedule for quarterly and annual skills competencies. The purpose of adopting a variety of skills days is to reduce the workload on the individual ALS providers and still provide significant opportunities for all paramedics to have their required skills signed off. Each skills day will include all quarterly skills and the annual skills listed. No preregistration is required. Participants may arrive at anytime during the posted times, sign in and complete their skills, and leave. Please arrive at least 30 minutes prior to the conclusion to ensure adequate time to get through all the skills stations. One (1) hour of no cost CE will be awarded to participants by CA EMS CE Provider 39-0001. The skills days are also open to EMT's and MICN's. Click here for Memo with dates.

July 9, 2010 - Draft Policies Available For Public Review

The EMS Agency is soliciting public comments on revised EMS Policies. The draft policies available for public comment may be viewed or downloaded from the Draft Policies web page.

Please submit your comments or suggestions using the comment forms provided on the Draft Policies web page no later than 5 PM, August 10, 2010. Completed comment forms may be submitted by email to Christine Tualla at ctualla@sjgov.org or by U.S. Mail to the San Joaquin County EMS Agency, PO Box 220, French Camp, CA 95231.

July 9, 2010 - Emergency Medical Responder Course

Thornton Fire is hosting an Emergency Medical Responder Course (EMR) beginning August 17th. Click here for the flyer with the course information and cost. For questions or to register please contact Thornton Fire at 209-794-2460.

June 30, 2010 - Holiday Office Closure

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency office will be closed Monday, July 5, 2010, and will re-open with normal office hours Tuesday, July 6, 2010.

June 30, 2010 - Fee Schedule Effective July 1, 2010

Click here for the new EMS fee schedule, effective July 1, 2010, which has been approved by the San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors.

June 30, 2010 - New and Revised Policies

New and revised Policies effective July 1, 2010, and January 1, 2011, have been posted on the Policies page. Click here for the memorandum which lists Policies that have been added, updated, or deleted. Please take time to read all Policies and become aware of all the changes. If you have any questions, please contact Kevin O'Loughlin, Sr., MICP at (209) 468-6818 or by email at: koloughlin@sjgov.org.

June 30, 2010 - Need for EMS Personnel to be Vaccinated for Pertussis

San Joaquin County Public Health Services and the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) are warning the public and healthcare workers of a current epidemic of pertussis (whooping cough) throughout California and San Joaquin County. According to CDPH California has experienced a four fold increase in pertussis cases since 2009, with five deaths of infants less than three months of age.

Children regularly receive a series of five vaccinations of DTP prior to starting kindergarten (2 months, 4 months, 6 months, 15-18 months, 4-6 years). The course of vaccination takes time to complete which makes newborns and infants extremely susceptible.

San Joaquin County Health Officer Karen Furst, M.D., is recommending that all healthcare providers, including all prehospital care personnel, receive a Tdap vaccination. Tdap was licensed in 2005, as a vaccination for adults to protect against tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis. All EMS personnel should receive a Tdap vaccination even if you are up-to-date on your TD (tetanus, diphtheria) vaccination. Adults regularly receive a TD (tetanus, diphtheria) booster every 10 years, usually following a wound to protect against tetanus, however Tdap is given to a person only once as an adult.

EMS personnel are encouraged to make arrangements with their primary care physician or healthcare provider of choice to receive a Tdap vaccination as-soon-as-possible. The issue for EMS personnel is less about the danger of the illness to themselves, as otherwise healthy adults, as it is about the concern that EMS personnel who unknowingly carry pertussis may come in contact with infants or pregnant women in their third trimester or immediately after delivery. It is these patients who are most susceptible to serious illness and death from pertussis.

Click here for the Memorandum which includes the Health Advisory issued by San Joaquin County Public Health Services and a CDC fact sheet on Tdap vaccination.

June 18, 2010 - AMR Compliance Report for March 2010 and April 2010

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency has completed its evaluation of American Medical Response's for March and April 2010 performance under their five year contract to provide exclusive emergency ambulance service. The AMR contract establishes accountability for meeting specific standards and provides the EMS Agency with complete access to data and information on AMR's operational, clinical, and administrative performance. Click here to view AMR's March 2010 and April 2010 compliance report.

June 18, 2010 - June's PAO Class Cancelled

June's Paramedic Accreditation Orientation class is cancelled. The next class is scheduled for July 28, 2010.

June 18, 2010 - Nerve Agent Training

Nerve Agent training is being conducted by the San Joaquin County EMS Agency and San Joaquin General Hospital on October 12, 2010 from 1300 to 1700. Topics to be covered include: CHEMPACK (what is it and how do I get it), Nerve Agents & Antidotes, DMS Triage Tag Hands-on Practice utilizing Mark I Kits. There will be multiple guest speakers and 4 hours of BRN and prehospital CE will be provided. For more information view the class flyer.

June 18, 2010 - Paramedic Preceptor Training Courses

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency is conducting three (3) paramedic preceptor training courses beginning in September 2010. To view requirements, dates, times and locations, click here to view the flyer. Up to eight (8) hours of Prehospital CE will be provided by the EMS Agency.

June 11, 2010 - County Prevails in EMS Litigation

On Monday, June 7, 2010, the County received the Stanislaus County Superior Court's trial decision for the litigation between the County of San Joaquin and the City of Stockton which sought clarification of the 1986 Agreement authorizing the Stockton Fire Department to provide ALS paramedic services.

This case addressed the question of whether the City, because of the 1986 ALS Agreement, was integrated into the EMS system and had lost any "grandfathered rights" to provide ALS services. The City contended that the agreement did not meet the requirements of Health and Safety Code § 1797.201 because the City did not request it first and because it did not reference that code section. The City also claimed that because the County did not provide 60 days notice before terminating the agreement that the County had breached the agreement and that the City was entitled to monetary damages.

The Court ruled that the 1986 Agreement was the type contemplated by Health and Safety Code § 1797.201, even though the City did not give up complete administrative control of its services, and that by entering into the 1986 Agreement the City has lost all grandfathered rights to provide all types of emergency medical services. What this means is that the City of Stockton Fire Department may only participate in the EMS system with the approval of the San Joaquin County EMS Agency. Based on a stipulated agreement entered into between the parties the 1986 Agreement and the Stockton Fire Department's authorization to provide emergency medical services expires on June 30, 2010. The Court did find in favor of the City that the County breached the 1986 Agreement by providing inadequate notice of termination in 2008 and awarded the City nominal damages of $1.00.

The County remains committed to the delivery of quality prehospital patient care services and is currently reviewing the decision to determine the next step in the process. The County remains committed to working cooperatively with the City of Stockton to resolve the issues between the parties which will allow the City to continue to provide paramedic service.

A copy of the Court's decision is available here.

June 11, 2010 - 2010 ALS Field Treatment Manuals

San Joaquin County EMS Agency has a limited supply of ALS Field Treatment Manuals available for purchase for $15.00. Additional manuals are expected in batches from the county's print shop over the next few weeks. Please stop by the EMS office during regular business hours (M-F 8:30 - 4:30) to purchase a manual. You may call ahead to reserve a copy for pick that same day.

June 3, 2010 - New EMT Application

The new EMT certification application has been posted on the Emergency Medical Technician Certification & Recertification page. The new EMT application effective June 18, 2010, will be the only version accepted after June 18, 2010.

May 28, 2010 - June 2010 Field Care Audit

San Joaquin County EMS Agency and San Joaquin General Hospital will be hosting a Field Care Audit on Thursday, June 10, 2010, from 1300 - 1600. This is a MCI review of new triage tags, medical group positions with MCI Jeopardy. Paramedics will be able to get their quarterly airway skills signed off during the class. The Field Care Audit is instructor led and is intended to serve as an educational opportunity. The class has been approved by the San Joaquin County EMS Agency for up to 3 hours of continuing education at no cost to participants. All San Joaquin County Emergency Medical Responders, EMTs, Paramedics, and MICNs are encouraged to attend (EMS Provider #39-0001, BRN #1524). Space is limited, please see flyer for additional information. To register for the class please click here.

May 21, 2010 - Draft Policies Available For Public Review

The EMS Agency is soliciting public comments on revised EMS Policies. The draft policies available for public comment may be viewed or downloaded from the Draft Policies web page.

Please submit your comments or suggestions using the comment forms provided on the Draft Policies web page no later than 5 PM, June 21, 2010. Completed comment forms may be submitted by email to Christine Tualla at ctualla@sjgov.org or by U.S. Mail to the San Joaquin County EMS Agency, PO Box 220, French Camp, CA 95231.

May 14, 2010 - Holiday Office Closure

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency office will be closed Monday, May 31, 2010 and will re-open with normal office hours Tuesday, June 1, 2010.

April 23, 2010 - AMR Compliance Report for January 2010 and February 2010

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency has completed its evaluation of American Medical Response's January and February 2010 performance under their five year contract to provide exclusive emergency ambulance service. The AMR contract establishes accountability for meeting specific standards and provides the EMS Agency with complete access to data and information on AMR's operational, clinical, and administrative performance. Click here to view AMR's January and February 2010 compliance report.

April 23, 2010 - Important Dates for EMT Certification Applications/California EMT Central Registry

EMT applications submitted after June 18, 2010, will not be processed until after July 9, 2010, due to changes in state law requiring the integration of all EMT personnel into the California EMT Central Registry. In addition all EMT applications submitted after June 18, 2010, are subject to the new state EMT application fees, and the county's revised application fee. The revised EMT certification application and related forms for use after June 18, 2010, will be posted on the EMS Agency website prior to June 1, 2010. Please always refer to our website for the most current applications and forms. Click here for the memorandum.

April 16, 2010 - Draft Policies Available For Public Review

The EMS Agency is soliciting public comments on revised EMS Policies. The draft policies available for public comment may be viewed or downloaded from the Draft Policies web page.

Please submit your comments or suggestions using the comment forms provided on the Draft Policies web page no later than 5 PM, May 17, 2010. Completed comment forms may be submitted by email to Christine Tualla at ctualla@sjgov.org or by U.S. Mail to the San Joaquin County EMS Agency, PO Box 220, French Camp, CA 95231.

April 12, 2010 - May 2010 Mobile Intensive Care Nurse (MICN) Course

San Joaquin County EMS Agency is hosting an MICN Course. This is a 48 hour course that will be held May 1st, 7th, 8th, 14th, 15th and 22nd. Click here for the course flyer. Prerequisites to enroll in this course are: Active California RN license; ACLS course completion; six months of emergency department experience within the past two years; and completion of NIMS 700 or the HICS course. This course is being funded by the 2009/10 Hospital Preparedness Program (HPP) Grant and is free to all hospitals located in San Joaquin County. Please click here to register. To complete the NIMS 700 requirement please visit: http://emilms.fema.gov/IS700a/index.htm.

April 12, 2010 - 2010 BLS Policy Update Class

Kevin O'Loughlin, EMS Specialist, will be presenting a 2010 BLS Policy Update class at Waterloo Morada Fire District, 6925 Foppiano Ln., Stockton, CA 95212 on Thursday, April 22, 2010, at 9 AM. 1.5 hours of instructor-based continuing education will be provided to participants by San Joaquin County EMS Agency, California EMS CE Provider # 39-0001. Click here to register. Please contact the EMS office if you would like additional information.

March 22, 2010 - EMS Policy Memorandum 2010-02, Patient Privacy

EMS Policy Memorandum 2010-02, Patient Privacy has been added to the Policies web page in the Policy Memorandum section. This policy memorandum reiterates that EMS personnel are not to share confidential patient information in any form, e.g. postings on the internet. See memorandum for complete information.

March 12, 2010 - 2010 EMSAAC Conference

The 2010 Emergency Medical Services Administrators' Association of California is schedule for June 8-9, 2010, at San Diego's Crowne Plaza Hotel. This year's conference title is "Get Connected! Advances in Technology and Practices for Prehospital Care." Click here to view the flyer or register online at http://www.emsaac.com/registration/.

March 12, 2010 - Revised Policies

Revised EMS Policies effective March 10, 2010, have been posted to the Policies page. Below is a summary of changes made:
  • Policy 2540B, Paramedic Candidate Optional Scope Verification: removed CPAP and 12 lead EKG from the form
  • Policy 5820, Pediatric Respiratory Distress: Bronchospasm: Atrovent was changed from 0.5 mg in 3.0 ml NS to 0.5 mg in 2.5 ml NS
  • Policy 3411, Advanced Life Support Radio Report Format: under the section marked "Base Hospital Report or Consultation", Request for consultation/orders needed (State reason) was moved from # 16 to # 2.
Please contact Kevin O'Loughlin at koloughlin@sjgov.org if you have any questions.

March 12, 2010 - REACH on Tour Conferences

The REACH on Tour conferences will held be in Petaluma on Saturday, May 15, 2010. If you are interested in attending the REACH on Tour conferences please call 888-660-9888, email conferences@REACHair.com, or visit the REACH website at https://www.eventville.com/catalog/eventregistration1.asp?eventid=1006535.

March 5, 2010 - EMS Authority 15 Day Public Comment on Revised Proposed Regulations

The Emergency Medical Services Authority has opened a 15-Day Public Comment period for regulations and guidelines affecting the EMT2010 Project. The public comment period is from February 26, 2010 through March 13, 2010. The proposed changes and a sample comment table are available on the EMS Authority's website at www.emsa.ca.gov.

March 5, 2010 - French Camp Fire District Reserves Annual Pancake Breakfast

French Camp Fire District Reserve Firefighters Organization will be hosting its annual Pancake Breakfast Saturday, April 10, 2010, from 7 am to 12 noon at the French Camp Fire Station. Fun, food, and raffle! Cost: Adults $6.00, Seniors and Children (12 and under) $4.00, Children under 3 eat free. All you can eat. All proceeds to benefit the French Camp Fire District Reserve Firefighters Organization Fund. Click here for the flyer.

February 12, 2010 - New and Revised Policies

New and revised Policies effective February 15, 2010, have been posted to the Policies page. Click here for the Memorandum, which lists Policies that have been added, updated, or deleted. Please take time to read all Policies and become aware of all the changes. If you have any questions, please contact Kevin O'Loughlin, Sr., MICP at (209) 468-6818 or by email at: koloughlin@sjgov.org.

February 12, 2010 - Change to the Paramedic Scope of Practice

Effective February 15, 2010, Dr. Buys has instituted two significant changes to two long-standing ALS field treatment policies. Click here to read the Policy Memorandum. If you have any questions, please contact Kevin O'Loughlin, Sr., MICP at (209) 468-6818 or koloughlin@sjgov.org.

February 12, 2010 - SIDS Training

California SIDS Program is offering four hours of continuing education on SIDS theories and current research in the field of sudden infant death syndrome. The course is free and is being held in Oakland on April 29th from 0800 - 1230. Click here for more details and registration information.

February 5, 2010 - March 2010 Field Care Audit

San Joaquin County EMS Agency and San Joaquin General Hospital will be hosting a Field Care Audit on Monday, March 15, 2010, from 0800 - 1100. We will be reviewing calls from the past few months and have airway skills stations set up for the last hour of class. Paramedics will be able to get their quarterly airway skills signed off during the class. The Field Care Audit is instructor led and is intended to serve as an educational opportunity. The class has been approved by the San Joaquin County EMS Agency for up to 3 hours of continuing education at no cost to participants. All San Joaquin County First Responders, EMTs, Paramedics, and MICNs are encouraged to attend (EMS Provider #39-0001, BRN #1524). Space is limited, please see flyer for additional information. To register for the class please click here.

February 2, 2010 - AMR Compliance Report for November 2009 and December 2009

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency has completed its evaluation of American Medical Response's November and December 2009 performance under their five year contract to provide exclusive emergency ambulance service. The AMR contract establishes accountability for meeting specific standards and provides the EMS Agency with complete access to data and information on AMR's operational, clinical, and administrative performance. Click here to view AMR's November and December 2009 compliance report.

January 29, 2010 - New Lodi Memorial Hospital Emergency Department

The new Lodi Memorial Hospital Emergency Department will open on February 2, 2010 at 7:00 AM. The new ambulance entrance is adjacent to the existing ambulance entrance on Fairmont Ave. Please click here for the memorandum from Lodi Memorial Hospital for additional information.

January 29, 2010 - Holiday Office Closure

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency office will be closed Monday, February 15, 2010, and will re-open with normal office hours Tuesday, February 16, 2010.

January 22, 2010 - Transportation Committee Meeting Cancelled

The Transportation Committee Meeting scheduled for February 4, 2010 has been cancelled. The next meeting is scheduled for May 6, 2010. To view the Transportation Committee Meeting schedule please visit the Committees web page.

January 22, 2010 - Additional 2010 Policy and Skills Reviews Classes

Three additional Policy and Skills Reviews (PSR) dates for 2010 have been added. These three classes will be in the beginning of the week to accommodate paramedics that primarily work the end of the week. The dates and location are: Tuesday, March 16th at AMR; Monday, June 7 in the EMS Classroom; and Tuesday, October 5, at AMR. Please visit the upcoming events page to register.

January 15, 2010 - Pediatric Trauma and Stabilization of Critically Ill Child for Transport Training

REACH Air Med is coming to St. Joseph's to present a class on Pediatric Trauma and Stabilization of Critically Ill Child for Transport on Wednesday, February 24th from 0800-1200 in the Auditorium at SJMC. This class will be free of charge, and REACH will issue 4 CEU's for both nurses and EMS personnel. Click here for flyer and additional information.

January 8, 2010 - EMS Liaison Committee Meeting Cancellation

The EMS Liaison Committee meeting scheduled for January 13, 2010 has been cancelled. The next meeting is scheduled for March 10, 2010, at American Medical Response. To view the EMS Liaison Committee Meeting schedule please visit the Committees web page.

January 8, 2010 - Triage Tuesday/Thursday

The 2010 EMS Triage Tuesday/Thursday's training schedule has been added to the All Trainings/Events By Date table on the Upcoming Events and Training page. In addition you may review the following memo for the complete schedule. The next Triage Tuesday drill is scheduled for Tuesday, January 12, 2010, 1200 hours through 2400 hours. If you have any questions, please contact Kevin O'Loughlin at (209) 468-6818 or by email at: koloughlin@sjgov.org.

January 8, 2010 - Crisis Prevention Institute, Inc., "Nonviolent Crisis Intervention® Instructor Certification Program"

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency will host a cpi® Crisis Prevention Institute, Inc., "Nonviolent Crisis Intervention® Instructor Certification Program," course, February 23-26, 2010. This course is open to all San Joaquin County HPP Participating Healthcare Facilities & Organizations. You must be approved by your Emergency Preparedness Coordinator to attend. This course is funded by the 09/10 FY HPP Grant. Click here for training flyer/registration form. 24 hours of EMS Continuing Education will be provided by San Joaquin County EMS Agency provider #39-0001, additional types of Continuing Education will be offered please see flyer for complete list. Please contact Phil Cook at 209-468-6818 or pcook@sjgov.org if you have any questions.

January 8, 2010 - Haz Mat for Healthcare, "Train the Trainer Course: Hazardous Materials First Responder Awareness, First Receiver/Responder Operations, Small Spill Response & Patient Decon"

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency will host a Haz Mat for Healthcare, "Train the Trainer Course: Hazardous Materials First Responder Awareness, First Receiver/Responder Operations, Small Spill Response & Patient Decon," June 2-4, 2010. This course is open to all San Joaquin County Acute Care Hospitals. This course is funded by the 09/10 FY HPP Grant. Click here for training flyer/registration form. 24 hours of EMS Continuing Education will be provided by San Joaquin County EMS Agency provider #39-0001, 24 contact hours of BRN Continuing Education is approved by CA BRN, Provider #444. Please contact Phil Cook at 209-468-6818 or pcook@sjgov.org if you have any questions.

January 8, 2010 - Image Perspectives, "Moulage-The Art of Injury Simulation" Course

The San Joaquin County EMS Agency will host an Image Perspectives "Moulage-The Art of Injury Simulation" Course, May 3-7, 2010. This course is open to all San Joaquin County HPP Participating Healthcare Facilities & Organizations. You must be approved by your Emergency Preparedness Coordinator to attend. This course is funded by the 09/10 FY HPP Grant. Click here for training flyer/registration form. Please contact Phil Cook at 209-468-6818 or pcook@sjgov.org if you have any questions.



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