WEBSTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Construction for a new EMS station is underway in the Town of Webster. The project, in the making since 2005, and now inching closer and closer to completion.
Organizers say the completion is coming at a time where the industry has been facing a lot of challenge. Director of Webster EMS Syed Ahmed Mustafa says the EMS industry is one of many struggling from the pandemic: employees are not staying around, roles aren’t getting filled.
“As an industry we are losing people left and right,” said Mustafa. “People are just saying, I’m afraid of COVID, the work is too hard, reimbursement too low, payment is too low,’ and it’s a hard thing to get people to come,” he said.
Comfort for employees is a big factor as well.
He says for years, his staff have shared their quarters with other first responder departments, without a place to cook, sleep, or even host community events. The ambulance, is their office.
“You want a place to come up and have a meal, do patient care reports in nice calm environment,” he said.
But in a few months, his team will have working quarters Mustafa says they deserve. The space is organized into four quadrants: there will be places to rest, a day room, office space and training room.
Mustafa says it’s important people the see the work being done to solve it, and maybe they’ll consider getting a job here.
“EMS and EMT paramedic classes are not full, when first responder agencies recruit they’re literally taking people right out of the classes and they’re losing them altogether,” he said.
The station will be fully developed by mid-August, with dedication set for this fall. The station is located on Jackson Rd, next to the Ukrainian Center of Rochester.