July 8, 2022
Spanish Fork, UT — The Spanish Fork Fire & EMS department was presented its paramedic license from the Utah State Bureau of EMS on Thursday and held a swearing-in ceremony for full-time paramedics and department leadership.
“Today marks a great milestone for Spanish Fork Fire & EMS,” commented Chief Eddie Hales. “having this license allows us to increase our level of service for the residents of Spanish Fork by offering a higher and more technical level of care.”
By elevating the department to paramedic status for ground transports, Spanish Fork’s EMS response is able to provide advanced cardiac and critical care medicine, perform a higher level of trauma services, and intubate patients. Under the previous AEMT license, crews were unable to perform these response measures.
Over the last two weeks, the department has hired six paramedics and will grow to twelve in January to cover the needs of a growing city.
“Our goal with these paramedics is to have them respond to each medical call in the city,” said Chief Hales. “In cases where a higher level of care is needed, paramedics will transport the patient to the hospital. In instances where an advanced EMT can take the call, the paramedics will be placed back in service.
“This method of staffing will allow us to offer paramedic level service on virtually every medical call going forward.”
With the addition of the Intermountain Healthcare Spanish Fork Hospital, there is an additional benefit of a paramedic license in providing all ground transports from the hospital.
“Today marks a day of progress with the medical capabilities of Spanish Fork City,“ Francis Gibson, CEO of Spanish Fork Hospital, commented. “ It’s important for us as we work side by side with local EMS agencies as they stabilize patients in the field and bring them to us for care. There are also times or occasions when we need to transport those patients to a higher level of care at a hospital with better capabilities than we may have.
“I want to congratulate Spanish Fork City and the men and women who became paramedics today and say well done.”
In addition to swearing in six paramedics, an EMS Captain, Fire Marshal, and Deputy Chief also took the Oath of Office.
“I’m very grateful and excited to have Kristina Reid, Jason Turner, and Krista Horting in leadership roles in our department,” Chief Hales continued. “They each bring a wealth of knowledge and experience that have allowed us to qualify for the paramedic license as well as create our new Fire Prevention Bureau.”
Jason Turner, the City’s first full-time fire marshal, will take a proactive approach to fire prevention and education. Having this position will help the department prevent incidents in part by working to make homes and businesses safer through inspections and plan reviews.
During Thursday’s ceremony, the department also unveiled a new Fire & EMS department logo and shield to celebrate the unification of the two divisions, a change that was made in April.
“The dedication and sacrifice for Fire and EMS in the community of Spanish Fork started in 1908 and 1974,” Hales remarked. “Countless volunteers and hours of service by so many individuals have built the foundation for today’s department. Being elevated to paramedic status is as much a nod to those who paved the way as those who continue to serve, preserve, and save.”