Presented by the Emergency Medical Services Practice Group

PA Bureau of EMS Response to Covid-19

With the Governor’s issuance of the Proclamation of Disaster Emergency on March 6, 2020, and with the increased demands being placed on EMS personnel and resources, the Pennsylvania Bureau of Emergency Medical Services (Bureau of EMS) has relaxed certain staffing and credentialing requirements to help ease the burdens on Pennsylvania EMS agencies and providers and to facilitate and expedite EMS responses to calls for help.

EMS Information Bulletin 2020-11, issued by the Bureau of EMS on April 1, 2020, provides the following Level I Exceptions:

  • Credentialing requirements for an Emergency Medical Services Vehicle Operator are suspended;
  • A BLS ambulance may be staffed by one EMT and a driver, with the EMT providing patient care;
  • An iALS ambulance may be staffed by one AEMT and a driver, with the AEMT providing patient care; and
  • An ALS ambulance may be staffed by one Paramedic and a Emergency Medical Responder (EMR).

All agencies that utilize these temporary staffing and/or credentialing exceptions must notify their regional EMS council and Medical Director within 24 hours of the agent’s first utilization of these exceptions. 

Patient Care Reports should carefully document the use of these exceptions as the Bureau has indicated that these reports may be subject to additional quality assurance review. 
Many thanks to all Pennsylvania EMS providers who are going above and beyond the call of duty to keep us safe!

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