Massachusetts General Law Chapter 111C governs the provision of emergency medical services throughout the Commonwealth and requires, among other things, that all cities and towns submit to the Department of Public Health a service zone plan that defines the local EMS resources and describes how those resources will be used and coordinated.
Utilizing a planning template developed by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, Boston EMS prepared a service zone plan application for the City of Boston. The plan was initially reviewed by the Metropolitan Boston EMS Council (EMS Region 4) to ensure compliance with each of the regulatory requirements, and then forwarded to the Office of Emergency Medical Services for final approval. The City of Boston became the 31st community in the Commonwealth to have an approved service zone plan in place.
While the term "EMS Service Zone" is relatively new, delivering emergency health care through a comprehensive, integrated plan is not new to Boston. Boston EMS prides itself on constantly updating its practices and techniques to leverage the latest advances in both medicine and technology. The Department strives to provide the highest level of emergency medical care possible. As noted in the plan, Boston EMS views its service zone plan as a work in progress and updates the document as needed.
You can learn more about the Service Zone requirements by consulting the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Office of Emergency Medical Services. The Boston EMS Service Zone Plan was initially approved by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health in September of 2007. In December of 2009, Boston EMS made a number of modifications to the document. Chief among the changes were revisions to the Department’s response time goals. Throughout 2009, Boston EMS has steadily reduced response times and has consistently outperformed historical targets. The revised response time goals accurately reflect the Department’s capacity and challenge Boston EMS to continue to improve service delivery.
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