Greetings, everyone! Let me introduce myself and my role at PCG. I joined the PCG team in April 2019 as a Senior Advisor for Fire and EMS. I will be working with PCG staff members on existing projects, including the Ground Emergency Medical Transportation (GEMT) program, Emergency Triage, Treat, and Transport (ET3) program and the Medicare Cost Survey. In addition, our team will be expanding PCG’s fire and EMS consulting service offerings to our more than 400 existing clients, as well as new clients that are seeking help with administrative and/or operational issues.
My background includes over 45 years of experience as an emergency services responder (firefighter/paramedic) and as an executive level chief officer. I retired from Las Vegas Fire & Rescue (LVFR) after 28 years of service, the last 15 as a Deputy Fire Chief. I served in every division including Administration, Communications, Operations, Medical Services and Fire Prevention where I served as the Fire Marshal for five years. As a Deputy Chief, I had the opportunity to develop and implement several successful programs, including a fire-based ambulance transport program, an ambulance franchise ordinance, and an in-house firefighter health and wellness program, to name a few.
For the past 25 years, I have also been working as an independent fire and EMS consultant and have had the opportunity to partner with a variety of clients across the country to complete operational/feasibility studies that helped to improve service delivery, generate revenues, enhance compliance to national standards (such as the National Fire Protection Association – NFPA 1710), and much more.
While I enjoy working as an independent consultant, I thrive as part of a team—it is in my DNA after nearly 30 years with LVFR—and I am thrilled to be a member of PCG’s Fire and EMS Team. Our collective fire and EMS consulting experience, which spans a large and varied range of projects and clients, along with the knowledge, experience, and expertise that I was fortunate to gain from LVFR, makes PCG uniquely qualified to support a broad range of public safety consulting projects. As part of the PCG team, I am excited about the opportunities to assist fire and EMS agencies, both new and existing clients, through our consulting work. I am also looking forward to being available to our existing clients that are dealing with fire and EMS challenges.
In my experience, seeking a different perspective or asking someone for their help is often the first step to overcoming the challenges or barriers we face as chief fire and EMS officers. For example, one of the more difficult obstacles I faced during my career was hiring a fire department physician for our health and wellness program.
The first barrier: It was a part-time position and the physician I planned on hiring wanted health insurance provided by the City, but the City did not provide that benefit to part-time employees. In consultation with our HR department, we were able to determine the annual cost to the City to provide health insurance for an employee. We added that cost into the physician’s hourly rate and he would purchase health insurance benefits from the City. This action created a second barrier.
The second barrier: By increasing the physician’s hourly pay rate to compensate for the cost of health insurance, the hourly rate was more than the City Manager’s hourly rate. The position wasn’t going to be approved unless the hourly pay rate was less than the City Manager. Being creative, we were able to reduce his hourly pay rate and make up the difference by supplemental pay for being on call and able to respond 24/7 in the event of second-alarm fire or a firefighter injury.
Tapping into our extensive fire and EMS network
PCG is contracted with over 400 fire and EMS providers nationwide that we routinely interact with. In addition, I have developed a vast professional network of fire and EMS leaders across the US whom I reach out to often for their advice or assistance. Many times, problems or issues confronted by fire and EMS teams and leaders can be resolved by consulting with someone who can provide advice or direction. PCG is here to support you and help address any problems or issues your department is facing. If we can’t help you, we probably know someone who can help.
To that end, PCG is offering its existing fire and EMS clients a complimentary 15-minute phone consultation call with myself or my colleague Chief Charles Hurley. Between the two of us, we have over 80 years exposure to fire and EMS operations and administration, and we both enjoy sharing our knowledge and expertise to help fire departments.
We look forward to talking with you! To schedule a call with one of us, please reach out to your PCG representative to get the process started. You may also email EMSStrategies@pcgus.com to set up your consultation.