As a village, Edgemont will have the same or better medical emergency services compared to what it receives now as part of unincorporated Greenburgh.
Medical emergency services in New York are generally classified as one of two types: (1) Advanced Life Support (ALS), requiring trained Paramedics and typically transport to a hospital; or (2) Basic Life Support (BLS), requiring the attention of trained Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT) and only sometimes transport to a hospital.
Today, Edgemont receive ALS services from the Town of Greenburgh. That status will not change upon incorporation.
The Town of Greenburgh provides comprehensive ALS services to the entire Town (all six villages and the unincorporated section). This ALS service is part of the “A” budget and is a Town-wide charge. Since 2009, the Town has acquired over $1 million of ambulance and other ALS vehicles for the benefit of residents Town-wide, including a $175,000 unit in October 2016:
In addition, the ALS operating budget of $1.3 million includes salaries for a Paramedic Supervisor and ten Paramedics, all of which are funded by the Town-wide “A” budget and therefore the services of which are available to both the villages and the unincorporated area.
Edgemont’s access to ALS service through the Town of Greenburgh will not change upon incorporation. Just like the other six villages, Edgemont will receive ALS emergency services from the Town of Greenburgh.
Today, Edgemont receives BLS services from both the Greenville Fire District and the Greenburgh Police Department. The Greenville Fire District’s 35 staff members are all certified and trained EMT’s. The Greenburgh Police Department has two civilian EMT professionals on staff. All of its officers have received certification in basic first aid and cardiopulmonary resuscitation, and all are afforded the opportunity to become EMT’s.
When we have a medical emergency in Edgemont, both the Fire District and the Police Department respond. As many of us know, the Fire District is almost always the first responder on the scene, which makes sense: Edgemont is only two square miles, and the Fire District is located right on Central Avenue. Greenburgh Police also respond immediately, but they are frequently not in Edgemont when they get the call. Any of the Greenville Fire District personnel, and any Greenburgh Police Department employees with EMT certification (including patrol officers), can provide BLS services.
When a BLS emergency requires a transport to a hospital, the Greenburgh Police, as our local police provider, calls for an ambulance. The ambulance travels from Route 119 in Greenburgh to the local Edgemont emergency pick up.
What happens to our BLS services if Edgemont incorporates and becomes a Village?
When we become a village, the Greenville Fire District will become the Edgemont Fire Department, but its funding and services will essentially remain unchanged. The same BLS-trained and certified fire department personnel will be able to provide BLS emergency services.
And what if a BLS emergency needs transport to a hospital?
If our Village officials contract with the Town of Greenburgh for police services, then Edgemont will continue to receive BLS transport as it does now. In an emergency requiring BLS response, the fire department and the police department will both respond with BLS-certified EMT’s. And the Greenburgh Police will provide any necessary transport.
If our Village officials create our own Edgemont Police Department, then a locally housed ambulance would be a logical acquisition to ensure that residents enjoy favorable response times. The Village of Edgemont’s ground-up budget shows more-than-sufficient surplus funds for the Village to acquire, house, and maintain an ambulance, if necessary. The ambulance could be managed by the Edgemont Police Department or by the Fire Department.
Another option would be contracting with another municipality to provide police protection services. In that case, either that municipality could provide BLS ambulance transport or the Village could acquire an ambulance to be garaged at the fire department, and our own fire department could provide BLS transport.
Notably, if either an Edgemont Village Police Department or Fire Department runs the ambulance, the ambulance response time would likely be significantly lower that it is now, as the home base would be somewhere in Edgemont rather than on Route 119 at the Town Police Station in Greenburgh.