Beach EMS Wins Gold Plus Award

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The vast majority of calls answered by the Fort Myers Beach Fire Department are calls for medical aid, or Emergency Medical Service calls. So the quality of that EMS service is a high priority in the community and within the Fire Department. The high quality of EMS service provided by the Fort Myers Beach Fire Department was recognized at the Fire Board meeting Wednesday night when American Heart Association Florida representatives attended the meeting to present the “Mission Lifeline Gold Plus Award” for Emergency Medical Services to the department.

The Gold award recognizes EMS agencies efforts in improving systems of care to rapidly identify suspected heart attack patients, promptly notify the medical center and trigger an early response from hospital personnel. This is the second year that the FMBFD has been recognized with a Gold Award for heart attack care. This year, they also earned the Plus award for stroke patient care. Only 42 agencies in Florida have ever received the Gold Plus award.

Nicole Menendez, Lee County Heart Walk Director, and Jeffrey Walker, Florida AHA Director of Quality & Systems Improvement, attended the meeting and presented the awards.

Fire Chief Matt Love recognized the EMS Division led by Division Chief of Emergency Medical Services Randy Kraus and his team of lead paramedics and the entire department for their efforts. “I get to receive the ‘Thank You’ cards and pass them on as I’m reminded of the quality of our EMS services,” said Love. “We are known for our incredibly high quality EMS. On behalf of the department, I’d like to recognize Randy Kraus and the EMS division in recognition of their achievement of the Gold Plus award.”

During the Chief’s Report, Love noted the efforts leading up to the Roar Offshore powerboat races and thanked department leadership for their role in that preparation. He also told the Fire Board about numerous training programs the department participated in during September, including high rise training conducted at Sunset Condominiums.

Service  anniversaries recognized in September included: Executive Assistant Fire Chief Scott Wirth 2 years; Captain Chris Morgani 18 years; Firefighter Eric Cook 18 years and Firefighter Ryan Huber 2 years.

September had 210 calls for service, with an average response time of 4:53. Of those calls, 72% were for EMS; 16% were for Good Intent/Service and 11% were for fire. 2019 calls for service total 2,412 as of the end of September.

During their Wednesday meeting the four members attending the meeting, Chair Larry Wood, Vice Chair Ron Fleming, Commissioner Jacki Liszak and Commissioner John Bennett voted unanimously to accept the schedule of board meetings for 2020 Treasurer Bob Raymond remains on excused absence.

During Commissioner Items, commissioners congratulated Chief Love and the department on their efforts with Roar Offshore and on winning the EMS awards. Liszak urged everyone to attend the upcoming free Water Safety Symposium on November 7 at Bay Oaks. “Whether you own a resort or you’re a grandparent hosting the kids this winter, you should attend this event and learn how to keep everyone safe around water!”

“With these EMS awards, I’d like to remind everyone to stop driving people who need emergency medical care to the hospital,” Liszak said. “Call 911! Our award-winning EMS team will be at your side administering care before you can get over the bridge.”

The next meeting of the Fire Board of Commissioners will be held Wednesday, November 13 at 9:30am at the Beach Library.