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February Midstate Minute

PLEASE READ! This Affects ALL Ambulance Agencies!!

Effective January 1, 2020 and continuing through 2024, ground ambulance providers and suppliers that have been selected to participate in the Medicare Ground Ambulance Data Collection System must collect information on cost, utilization, revenue, and other service characteristics in accordance with the Medicare Ground Ambulance Data Collection Instrument for a continuous 12-month period.  The information collected will be used to evaluate the extent to which reported costs relate to payment rates under the Medicare Part B Ambulance Fee Schedule (AFS), as well as to collect information on the utilization of capital equipment and ambulance capacity, and the different types of ground ambulance services furnished in different geographic locations, including rural areas and low population density areas (super rural areas).  Failure to sufficiently submit the required information will result in a 10 percent reduction to payments under the AFS for one year, unless a hardship exemption has been granted or an informal review has determined that your organization is not subject to the 10 percent reduction to payments.

Policy Statement Wuhan Coronavirus


This document is designed to provide Emergency Medical Services (EMS) practitioners, agencies and systems with interim guidance regarding the outbreak of 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) that began in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China on December 2019.

This guidance should be considered for the development of response plans and is not intended to supersede any infectious disease response plan that has been developed and approved by local, State or Federal authorities legally charged to do so. This guidance does not constitute a response protocol but serves as a reference for general considerations and the protection of responders.

EMS agencies are encouraged to adopt policies and procedures regarding response and treatment of all patients with communicable diseases. EMS agencies should assure that all personnel are provided with information regarding the outbreak of 2019-nCoV and any necessary personal protective equipment (PPE), such as N95 respirators, including guidelines for the use of such PPE.

For updates and additional information regarding this 2019-nCoV outbreak, please visit the following web pages:

For questions regarding information in this advisory or information you’ve received about this outbreak from other sources, please contact the Bureau of Emergency Medical Services and Trauma Systems.

Additional updates will be provided as more information about the virus is released. 

Ryan Greenberg

Michael Garrett MD

It is with great sadness we announce the passing of a long standing Midstate advocate.   Dr. Garrett passed away earlier this week.  Dr Garrett (Mike) was instrumental in the creation of the Midstate Region.   He provided guidance and medical oversight to our “new region”.  It was under Dr. Garrett that our Paramedic Program began, and our Education Program grew.  Dr. Garrett served in both St. Luke’s and Oneida Healthcare Emergency Departments during his career. 

Cost Data Collection Seminar

The United New York Ambulance Network (UNYAN), American Ambulance Association, MultiMed Billing and North Eastern Rescue Vehicles have partnered up for a one day seminar on CMS ambulance Cost Data Collection. If you bill for ambulance service, you will be required to submit your cost data to Medicare.

Class Cancellations

The Dan Broedel’s Sunday morning Basic EMT class AND the Melissa Lockwood’s Sunday morning AEMT class (both held at the Midstate Training Center) have been cancelled for tomorrow, Sunday, January 19th. Classes will resume as usual next Sunday.


MONDAY Jan 20, 5PM Griffiss International Airport, 645 Bomber Drive Rome NY 13440

TOPICS: Inhalation Injuries & Cyano Kits – Analgesia & Sedation – Managing Combative Patient

Each quarter our clinical education staff here at Mercy Flight Central holds a CME night for our Flight Clinicians. Historically these were opportunities for our providers to take part in “m&m” discussions based off of complicated cases our they’ve encounter in the field. As part of our professional growth and development our Medical Director Dr. Galton wanted to extend an invite to all of our Rome area EMS professionals. This opportunity is FREE and we are providing pizza and refreshments for the attendees during the presentations.. We request that attendees pre-register for the event via our Facebook page so that we can obtain an accurate head count for seating and refreshments. Thank you and take care!  

ATTENTION ALL AGENCIES: Please Read and Complete

Dear Program Agencies, Council Members and EMS Agency Administrators,

We would like to thank all the agencies that have completed the 2019 BLS Protocol updates and implementation by the December 31st, 2019 deadline.

As outlined in EMS DAL 19-02:

“EMS agencies may adopt the 2019 BLS Protocols after ensuring that all certified personnel have received proper training and education on new skills and procedures. At a minimum, each provider must complete the online 2019 BLS Protocol update that will be provided, free of charge, by the Bureau of EMS utilizing the online learning management system. While the online training will introduce the new protocol format and overview of the changes, it will not provide training on new skills and procedures included in the protocol. EMS agency training officers are encouraged to work with their Agency Medical Director, REMSCO, REMAC and/or Program Agency to facilitate the delivery of supplemental didactic material and skills training.

EMS agencies shall establish a training record to verify training that shall be maintained in the agency personnel file of each provider. After ensuring all certified agency personnel have received training, agencies are required to notify their Regional Program Agency of the date the 2019 BLS Protocols will be implemented. All EMS agencies must complete required training verification and implement the 2019 BLS Protocols no later than December 31, 2019.”

While many agencies have already completed the update, several agencies have requested an extension in order to meet full compliance for the BLS Protocol training.  

The Bureau has determined that extensions may be permitted when a formal application for an extension is requested by an EMS agency and is approved by the Bureau.  The Bureau will review EMS agency requests for an extension on a case by case basis in all regions of New York State. 

All agencies must submit an online protocol compliance form, using the link below, on or before Friday, January 17th, 2020. The form includes a section to request an extension for those agencies who have not completed training or implementation of the 2019 BLS Protocols. The online compliance form is posted on the NYS DOH Website or may be accessed directly at:

Any agency requesting an extension must provide a written plan for agency compliance. Extensions will be considered for up to 120 days from the December 31st, 2019.  No extension will be granted for longer than 120 days. 

Due to the delay in getting the extension application posted online, requests for extensions will be permitted until Friday, January 17th, 2020.  Agencies who have not completed the BLS protocol roll out for all certified providers and have not requested an extension may face disciplinary action for non-compliance. 

Thank you in advance for your cooperation and assistance during the transition to the new BLS protocols.  Should you have any additional questions please feel free to reach out to your area Bureau of EMS District Chief or Deputy Chief of Education, Jean Taylor. 

Steven P. Dziura Jr. Deputy Director, NYS DOH BEMSAT

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