In June of 1953, the Norwood Fire Co #1 had a 1953 Cadillac ambulance donated from the Norwood VFW. At that time First Aid training was the only requirement to be an ambulance attendant. Every two years a new Cadillac ambulance was purchased by the Norwood Fire Company. In the 1980's we purchased our first Ford Type III Horton box Ambulance. At this time we currently operate two BLS units. We have a 2003 Ford Horton ambulance. We also utilize our 1999 Ford Horton.
Due to the decrease in volunteer availability, Norwood was the first EMS provider to start with paid in-house EMT crews from Monday through Friday, 6am-6pm. This took placeinSeptember of 1996. The positive response prompted us to consider paid in-house, 24-hour service, seven days a week. This became a reality in June of 2003, making us the only BLS unit inDelaware County to have paid 24-hour coverage for our primary BLS unit. Our second unit is still dispatched and manned by BLS volunteers. We currently have eight full time employees and twenty part-timers to cover our BLS units.
Today's crews are required to have Emergency Medical Technician certification. Many have additional certifications. Education is on going and tracked by not only by Norwood EMS, but also by the County, so as to always be current. The County provides Continuous Education Classes that the EMT's are required to attend. The Norwood Fire Company is an official con-ed training sight.
At this time, the Norwood EMS units are the primary BLS service for Norwood and Glenolden. We also cover Prospect Park and Ridley on a shared basis. We also cover surrounding towns as a BLS back up. Crozer, Taylor and Mercy Fitzgerald Paramedics provide our ALS services.
We are fully computerized. Long gone are the days of hand writing charts. Our reports are logged on our computers and uploaded to the County. We still do our own billing in station. Our dedicated billing phone number is 610-583-1776.
In the beginning, an average year would have encompassed 200-300 calls. Now our yearly trips top 2200. We track the amount of calls each person responds to, and at our annual banquet, they are recognized for their commitment to the ambulance and people needing their assistance.