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Sparks City Council Meeting 1/14/2019

General Business: 9.14

Title: Consideration, discussion, and possible approval to provide paramedic level emergency medical service (EMS) on Engine 31 (Fire Station 3) in accordance with the Paramedic Program implementation schedule adopted by the City Council on August 22, 2016.
Petitioner/Presenter: Chris Maples, Fire Chief/Chris Maples and Ed McDonald, Training Captain
Recommendation: That Council approve staffing Engine 31 with paramedics
Financial Impact: N/A
Total Costs: $2,500.00
Fund: General Fund    Account: 603420
Program: Emergency Medical Training (101425)
Amount: $2,500.00    Budget Status: Budget Exists
Business Impact (Per NRS 237):
A Business Impact Statement is not required because this is not a rule.
Agenda Item Brief:

This Agenda Item seeks Council approval to provide paramedic level EMS on Engine 31 (Station 3), following the Paramedic Program implementation schedule adopted by the Council on August 22, 2016.


On August 22, 2016, the Sparks City Council authorized the Sparks Fire Department (SFD) to provide paramedic level EMS in the City of Sparks.  Because of budget and staffing constraints, the Paramedic Program was designed to be phased in over several years, based on the availability of funding, staffing, and the equipment needed to provide this level of EMS care.

The Paramedic Program was implemented on April 3, 2017, when Ladder 41 and Engine 51 were licensed by the State to provide paramedic level EMS in the northern portion of the City, operating out of Station 4 and Station 5.

Stations 4 and 5 were the first two stations staffed with paramedics, as residents of these areas typically experienced a longer wait time for the arrival of a REMSA unit staffed with paramedics.  Additionally, staffing Stations 4 and 5 with paramedics allowed SFD to move forward with implementation of the Enhanced Automatic Aid Agreement with the Truckee Meadows Fire Protection District (TMFPD).  Enhanced Auto Aid with TMFPD was fully implemented on February 26, 2018.

After Stations 4 and 5, the implementation program called for Engine 21 (Station 2) to be the next apparatus licensed for paramedic level EMS.  Station 2 was selected as it historically has one of the highest call volumes in the City.  In order to license Engine 21, SFD needed to acquire additional equipment, including advanced life support (ALS) cardiac monitors/defibrillators for the paramedics to use.

On November 17, 2016, SFD applied for a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) to purchase four (4) Zoll X-Series defibrillators and related equipment.

On May 26, 2017, SFD was notified the grant request had been approved; and on June 26, 2017, the Council accepted the AFG.

On January 8, 2018, the Council authorized the purchase of the defibrillators under the terms of the AFG (total cost of $117,144, with $106,467 to be reimbursed to the City).

The defibrillators were received by SFD on March 30, 2018, and one was put into service on Engine 21 shortly thereafter.  Another will be put on Engine 31 when it is staffed with paramedics.

The costs associated with licensing Engine 31 are estimated at $2,500 for consumable supplies and medications.  The FY19 SFD budget has sufficient funds available to acquire these items.

When the Paramedic Program was approved by Council in August 2016, the Department had 15 paramedics on staff.  Today, we have 24.  This gives us enough paramedics to staff Station 3.

With Council approval, Engine 31 (Station 3) is expected to be staffed with paramedics on January 18, 2019.

Looking ahead, the next apparatus scheduled to be staffed with paramedics is Engine 12 (Station 1).  It is anticipated this will occur in the first quarter of 2020, subject to Council approval.



Stations 4 and 5 (Ladder 41 and Engine 51) have been providing paramedic services since the paramedic program was initially approved by the Council on April 3, 2017.  On April 23, 2018, the Council approved paramedic service for Station 2 (Engine 21).  Paramedic service began at Station 2 on May 7; and, as of November 30, Engine 21 has been dispatched to 1,196 EMS calls.  Of these 1,196 calls, Engine 21's paramedics had the opportunity to provide some level of EMS care on 815 calls.  On 186 of these calls, paramedic interventions were initiated, including advanced airway management, cardiac monitoring, and the administration of medications.  It is anticipated that staffing Station 3 with paramedics will result in an increased utilization of paramedic skills and improved patient outcomes in District 3, similar to what has been demonstrated at Stations 2, 4, and 5.

The implementation of paramedic level EMS at Sparks Fire ensures that our residents and visitors are receiving the highest level of pre-hospital care possible, consistent with that provided to the residents of Reno and the unincorporated areas of the County.


1.  The City Council can choose to approve staffing of Engine 31 with paramedics in accordance with the implementation schedule previously adopted by the Council on August 22, 2016.

2.  The Council can choose not to approve staffing Engine 31 with paramedics.

3.  The Council can provide some other direction regarding the Department's Paramedic Program.

Recommended Motion:

I move to approve implementing paramedic level emergency medical service on Engine 31.

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