With the town’s population growing and resident needs evolving, it is time to seriously consider ways to make advance life support services available in town, according to council members.
For this reason, Mayor Thomas A. Delnicki, at the behest of the council, has directed the town manager and town attorney to draft a request to solicit proposals for ways to provide such services in South Windsor.
"It's about time that the town offers paramedic service," Councilor Keith Yagaloff said.
Currently, the South Windsor Ambulance Corps, the town’s primary ambulance provider, offers EMT, or basic life support services, but a Manchester ambulance company must be called in if a paramedic, or additional advanced life support services, is required.
As a result, possibly up to 40 percent of patients are double billed - one for the South Windsor Ambulance Corps’ transportation costs and then for the Advanced Life Services (ALS) costs from the Manchester ambulance.
"They've served our town well, but the times have changed ... it's time to evolve," Councilor Saud Anwar said during a meeting Monday night, referring to the increasing number of seniors in South Windsor.
Councilor Edward Havens was quick to defend the ambulance corps’ long history of serving the town of South Windsor.
"It appears to me that it is us against them," Havens said, adding that in order to maintain fairness “they should be become part of this conversation."
"We have asked them to come in," Yagaloff said. "We have engaged them."
In March of 2012, representatives from the South Windsor Ambulance Corps said that it would cost up to $700,000 to upgrade to paramedic-level care.
But at a Town Council meeting on Dec. 17, 2012, Galligan said that the town could obtain advance life support services for no additional cost. He did not elaborate how that would be done.
In Jan. 22 letter, Larry Gorman and the other members of the Board of Directors for South Windsor Ambulance Corps defended the EMS-only service, suggesting that instead of distributing a Request
For Proposal for advanced services, the town should ask for an RFP for a consultant to come in and evaluate the situation.
Monday night members of the town council rejected this idea.
"We made a decision as a town that we want ALS," Yagaloff said. "They want to do a study."
Delnicki has directed Town Manager Matthew Galligan to request the Town Attorney to get out an RFP for services as soon as possible.
"This is not new," Galligan said. "People are trying very hard to work with the level of care."
Other neighboring towns that already provide paramedic-level care include East Windsor, Windsor, Enfield and Manchester.