Madison’s 2022 Budget Includes Funding to Provide Improved Ambulance Service for the Southeast Portion of the City
Madison’s 2022 budget, approved by the Common Council last night, includes ten new paramedic positions in the Fire Department to staff an ambulance at Station #14. This additional staffing will decrease response times, and increase the service to residents of the southeast side of the City and beyond. Mayor Rhodes-Conway joined District 16 Alder Jael Currie and five other Alders in sponsoring the amendment.
“Madison’s southeast side has been advocating for an ambulance at Station 14 for many years,” said Mayor Rhodes-Conway, “I’m pleased that Ald. Currie has found a way to get this into the budget, and that our firefighters, EMTs and paramedics will be able to provide high quality service with similar response times City-wide.”
Those in Fire Station 14’s territory have depended on ambulances traveling from Station 5 (Cottage Grove Road), Station 6 (W. Badger Road), and Station 8 (Lien Road) to respond to their neighborhood. When they do, these ambulances were no longer available to respond to emergencies in their own territories, causing a domino effect of dependence on other ambulances to cover the rest of the city.
“Although Fire Station 14 on the City’s Southeast side opened in 2018, the area has not had adequate ambulance and emergency transport service,” said District 16 Alder Jael Currie. “I am pleased and relieved that with the passage of my operating amendment, the Madison Fire Department can staff that ambulance, and provide equitable, quality service to all parts of the City. I thank my Council colleagues and the Mayor for their support of this long-time effort.”
Funding a ninth ambulance at Station 14 would also help alleviate the city-wide shortage of medic units the department confront on a daily basis. Staff work together to provide service to all areas of the City, but if all the ambulances are in service, staff would need to call for assistance from outside of the City, again, increasing the response time.
“The Madison Fire Department is extremely excited that the Common Council could work with Mayor Rhodes Conway to solve a need for advanced life support ambulance service in our community,” said Madison Fire Chief Steve Davis. “The men and women of the MFD take the issues of longer response times and ambulance shortages very seriously as we strive to serve the community every day. A special thanks to Alder Jael Currie, who worked very hard over the last few months to ensure not only her district gets the coverage, but also citywide.”
Firefighters Local 311 President Mahlon Mitchell added, “The addition of an ambulance serving the southeast side of Madison will greatly decrease response times across the city, ensuring that our members are able to effectively deliver life-saving service to all of our citizens no matter their zip code. Fire Fighters Local 311 would like to thank the Mayor and the Common Council for their work to provide adequate staffing to meet the demands of our growing city.”
Emergency service personnel have a consistent goal, to provide high quality service regardless of where a resident lives in the City. This staffing will make that a reality and cut response times to individuals suffering a health crisis, which in turn can save lives.
- Katie Crawley, 608-335-7071, firstname.lastname@example.org