The Health Department's investigation found 38 emergency medical services providers failed to complete pre-hospital care reports on 178 occasions. Investigators were looking into allegations that ambulance corps members were refusing to transport patients.
According to the details of a tentative settlement, the city will have to pay a $10,000 fine. Of that money, $2,000 must be paid within 30 days of the settlement's approval. The rest would be forgiven if the department keeps a clean record for two years. The Common Council will vote on the settlement on Monday.
Fire Chief Jeff McCrobie released a statement saying, "These issues as serious as they are, involve paperwork only and patient care was never compromised."
T he fire department has instituted new policies and procedures in response to the investigation. The state has said it is satisfied with the changes.
Fire Chief Jeff McCrobie's full statement:
"Pending Common Council approval, this matter involving the documentation issues concerning pre-hospital care reports should be resolved. This is not a new event but the same one noted earlier in the year and most recently in our press release of August 11, 2010. These issues as serious as they are, involve paperwork only and patient care was never compromised. Most involved "cancelled enroute" calls, where the crews were cancelled and never made it to the destination and returned to quarters.
The Fire Department has instituted new policies and procedures in response to this investigation. The State has acknowledged and commended our efforts in remedying these violations. I am confident that our corrective measures will prevent future issues in this area."