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County Enters into New EMS Contract

Putnam County had a new advanced life support service provider for countywide services.

Empress Ambulance Services was selected following a selection committee process following an open request for proposal. The $8.3 million three-year contract began July 16, with potential for two additional years.

“Empress has a stellar reputation in the Hudson Valley and I’m hopeful this new contract will serve our community well,” said Legislator Ginny Nacerino, R-Patterson, chairwoman of the County Legislature’s Protective Services Committee. “I look forward to hearing from Empress representatives at our next legislative Protective Services Committee meeting later this month.”

The scope of the new agreement was developed by the Putnam County Bureau of Emergency Services, the county’s Purchasing Department, and individuals from the emergency services community – specifically members of the Emergency Services Safety Advisory Board and EMS Council.

Empress was chosen because it submitted the lowest responsible proposal, demonstrated an ability to implement services in a timely manner, and has a direct knowledge of providing services in Putnam County, according to Putnam County Executive Kevin Byrne.

“Providing for the health and well-being of our residents will always be a top priority, and we’re excited to have a new agreement with a strong, reputable partner like Empress to bring quality services to Putnam,” he said. “We thank Ambulnz for all their work over the past 18 months in providing emergency care to residents.”

Earlier this year, the county’s previous ALS provider, Ambulnz, requested a new contract be negotiated to provide ALS services for all of Putnam County. It had been previously reported that Ambulnz significantly underbid its initial contract. The county agreed to entertain a new proposal, but made it clear it would open the process to competing proposals, as well, according to Byrne.

“This new agreement is a significant improvement and a win for county residents,” said Bureau of Emergency Services Commissioner Bob Lipton. “The input we’ve received from those in the emergency services community was critical to this new contract, and we’re thankful for their input. There was a lot of collaboration to make this happen in such a timely manner.”

“We feel Empress Ambulance Services will be able to provide services to ensure the health and safety of our residents,” added Alex Roehner, County’s Director of Emergency Medical Services. “We will work will Empress and Ambulnz to allow for a smooth transition.”

Unlike numerous other programs implemented by county government, ALS services are not mandated for county governments by the state or federal government. Putnam County, unlike surrounding counties, has taken on this county-wide responsibility with the understanding that providing this service is a priority and is essential. This also provides a substantial cost savings to local towns and villages, according to the county executive’s office.

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