07/06/10 189 W - + 2 - 6 Orange County EMS, Response Times, Budget

This morning's News & Observer reports on response times and budget additions for Orange County EMS, and with the provocative headline Orange EMS Found to Take Too Long To Respond. They open with a publicized incident from two years ago, and cite the average response times for both EMS response and county 911 call processing. They compare the former to national standards, and the latter to the state benchmark. They also contrast Orange and Wake average response times.

Segue into system improvements, and the second half of the article discusses what was and wasn't funded this year, for requested improvements to OCEMS. Four new medics join in January, and a new ambulance has been funded. Nine new medics were sought, along with new EMTs and new dispatchers.

Read the entire story. Discuss as desired, as there are a couple angles to consider. Is this a fair article, attention-getting but not necessarily alarmist? Should it be more, should it be less? Does it successfully explain the situation in language and examples that citizens and elected officials can understand and appreciate? Presuming they're reading, that is.

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