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EMS/Fire Dispatch Report

A look into Leon County and Tallahassee’s Fire/EMS dispatch found no disasters. However, the consultant team PTI says the current protocol is allowing valuable seconds to pass by.

The problem is EMS is dispatched by the county in one location, and the city dispatches fire from another, so the recommendation on the table is a single, independent dispatch center; one call, no transfer.

“We think performance would be improved. We also think that very valuable seconds could be shaved off the time a resident needs if he or she is having a heart attack or some other problem that EMS support is needed,” suggests PTI President Costis Toregas.

But Toregas says it's going to take trust between the governments. Without it an intergovernmental solution would be "next to impossible.”

The city says it's willing to move forward.

“We think that it's a real problem that needs to be addressed. We don't know that the county shares that view, but we do hope they will join hands on this first step to a better coordinated response,” says Debbie Lightsey of the Tallahassee City Commission.
The report is also recommending long-term strategies, including career development for dispatches on a long-term career path.

The county will hear Toregas' recommendations Tuesday.


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