New York City will receive some extra help with the increased volume of medical calls that have arisen during the pandemic.
On March 31, Mayor de Blasio announced a partnership between FEMA and the City to bring 250 more ambulances and approximately 500 more EMTs and paramedics to New York City.
“Our EMTs and paramedics are doing unbelievable work under the toughest of circumstances,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “This week, I promised them help was on the way, and today it is. Our partnership with FEMA will give our first responders the help they need to continue being the heroes of our city.”
The addition of the ambulances and personnel will increase capacity for medical transport in between medical sites and assist the FDNY with responding to a record number of medical calls. These ambulances come fully staffed by paramedics and EMTs from around the country.
“These resources will make an immediate impact for our first responders who are on the frontlines of fighting COVID-19, and we are extremely thankful to FEMA for providing this support,” said NYC Emergency Management Commissioner Deanne Criswell. “I also want to remind New Yorkers that they can also assist those most in need by only calling 911 in an emergency.”
During the pandemic, New York City’s EMS has been responding to a record number of medical emergencies each day – a 50% increase over normal daily call volume. FDNY is urging New Yorkers to only call 911 if you have a true medical emergency. Those who are sick should call a doctor, and can call 311 for help getting connected with a doctor.
“Our EMTs and Paramedics are facing an unprecedented number of medical calls each day. There has never been a busier time in the history of EMS in New York City,” said Fire Commissioner Daniel A. Nigro. “We are very grateful for this assistance from FEMA that will make an immediate impact to the 911 system and greatly assist our men and women on the frontlines of this pandemic.”
“We are proud to support the first responders and people of New York as we all work together to help guide our city, our state and our country through this difficult time,” said Tom Von Essen, FEMA Region II Administrator.