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LAX EMS Enhancement Pilot Program

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

The Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) operates the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), which is the second busiest airport in the nation.  The airport has seen an increase in the amount of passengers for three straight years; correspondingly, the Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD) has also seen an increase in Emergency Medical Service (EMS) responses to the airport.  In 2016, LAX served over 80 million passengers, which resulted in heavy call loads for neighboring fire stations.

LAFD Firefighters standing in front of bicycles, as an advanced life support (ALS) Cycle Teams

Data shows that the majority of EMS incidents at LAX do not result in ambulance transports to the hospital.  Therefore, the current model of routinely sending Fire Companies and Rescue Ambulances to these incidents is not an efficient service model.

Therefore, to address the unique needs of LAX, LAFD is implementing a 6-month EMS enhancement pilot program on Monday, October 2, 2017.  The pilot program will consist of two advanced life support (ALS) Cycle Teams (CT 51 & CT 251) supported by an Advanced Provider Response Unit (APRU) staffed with a Nurse Practitioner and a FF/PM, all located in the LAX terminals.

This is a pilot program with clear metrics to evaluate its success.  At the end of the pilot program, these metrics will be evaluated in order to assess if it should be continued and if so, should the work hours be expanded.

The goals of this pilot program are the following:

·         Improve the level of EMS service at LAX.

·         Decrease response times to EMS incidents at LAX.

·         Decrease the transport rate of patients from LAX.

·         Decrease the number of responses to LAX by LAFD resources.

·         Increase the availability of LAFD resources.

·         Decrease the “wall time” for LAFD ambulances.

Firefighter on the Advanced Provider Response Unit (Med Cart 51).

These proactive measures are expected to have a positive impact on LAFD Battalion 4 and LAX surrounding resources.  In doing so, we continue to improve the delivery of EMS by researching alternative models of pre-hospital care and delivery, establish solutions to address lengthy hospital wait times, and expand Department EMS response capabilities as laid out in the Strategic Plan.  Through these actions, the LAFD will continue to be a leader in delivering exceptional Emergency Service to the people of Los Angeles.

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