BRENTWOOD BOROUGH, Pa. — On Monday night, leaders in Brentwood weighed the future of its EMS services.
The community heard bids from two providers who would handle its emergency medical services and meet criteria like patient care, fiscal sustainability, and safety.
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However, the biggest concern for residents by far was who can respond the fastest in an emergency.
The bid for ambulance services went out after Brentwood Borough Council said their current service company, Brentwood EMS, won’t have a place to operate once the former borough building is demolished this fall. The council stated they had no choice but to request proposals from other EMS providers to ensure public safety.
When the council put out their bid for service, the Mt. Lebanon-based Medical Rescue Team South Authority responded.
On Monday, both companies made their case.
Brentwood EMS was first up, citing their 45-year service and involvement in the community, including the ongoing education and training they offer to their personnel.
Brentwood EMS also noted their average response time is six minutes.
Next to present to the board was Medical Rescue Team South Authority, or MRTSA.
MRTSA mentioned they have over 75 years of experience in a management-level capacity and currently serve six nearby municipalities.
They also acknowledge that although they aren’t in the Brentwood borough, they have short response times and have responded to the area in the past, saying their non-emergency response time is nine minutes, eight seconds, and their lights-and-siren response time is around seven minutes, 40 seconds.
MRTSA also explained that if Brentwood is added to their roster, they would add an additional medic unit and lieutenant to help with coverage. MRTSA also told the council they will need to purchase a new ambulance for the area to the tune of several hundred thousand dollars.
During the public comment section of Monday’s meeting, residents expressed they want to keep Brentwood EMS, saying they are concerned about MRTSA’s response times, as every minute counts.
Residents also expressed concern over MRTSA’s proposed fees including a $50 fee for every household in the borough to support EMS.
Brentwood EMS says they found a new building where they can operate, but they are waiting on council to see if they will commit to that location.
Borough Council will make a decision in the coming months.
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