West York EMS chairman writes of regionalization following WellSpan decision

Volunteer District Fire Chief Paul Grubbs, right rear, and John Dommel, president of Grantley Fire and EMS, show off the sirens on an ambulance in the Spring Garden Township fire house. Grantley EMS is becoming an advanced life support provider after WellSpan announced it would no longer staff local EMS companies with paramedics. (Jason Plotkin - Daily Record/Sunday News)

Volunteer District Fire Chief Paul Grubbs, right rear, and John Dommel, president of Grantley Fire and EMS, show off the sirens on an ambulance in the Spring Garden Township fire house. Grantley EMS is becoming an advanced life support provider after WellSpan announced it would no longer staff local EMS companies with paramedics. (Jason Plotkin – Daily Record/Sunday News)

A few weeks ago, I spoke with Grantley EMS about the changes they’ve made regarding WellSpan’s recent decision to stop leasing paramedics to the community.

Then, I saw this on the @YorkRegionalEMS Twitter account.

(Yoe Ambulance changed its name recently to York Regional EMS to more accurately reflect its service to the community and help promote the regionalization WellSpan wants to create through its decision.)

The post, authored by West York EMS chairman Rod Drawbaugh, talks about the changes happening for the local emergency services provider.

West York EMS’ coverage area includes West York and West Manchester Township. Dennis Reigart, president of the EMS company, declined to elaborate on the post following a call to the station Monday.

“As a result of WellSpan’s decision,” Drawbaugh writes, “West York Ambulance is now forced to hire paramedics instead of leasing them.”

The new level of service began on November 1. Several former paramedics from Medic 97, a WellSpan-staffed medic unit, joined the West York team, according to the post.

Drawbaugh also writes of the Affordable Care Act and how it will change the landscape for ambulance providers.

Currently, ambulance providers are incentivized to take a patient to the highest cost place for medical evaluation and treatment using the highest cost mode of transportation

“In the new healthcare world,” Drawbaugh writes, “Medicare, and other payers, is recommending a reduction in payment for ambulance services.  This creates a real problem for small ambulance services like West York.”

To solve this problem, he talks of regionalization.

To read the rest of Drawbaugh’s letter, click here.

About Lauren Boyer

I'm a Business Reporter for the York Daily Record/Sunday News. I cover banking, investing and all sorts of manufacturing, from companies like Harley-Davidson to mom-and-pop operations. I don't go anywhere without my iPad or a large cup of coffee. Contact me with story ideas at 717-771-2062 or lboyer@ydr.com.
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