(Waupun) A grant from an area healthcare provider helped the Waupun Fire Department’s Emergency Medical Responder Program get started. The agency began offering EMR services in February. Emergency Medical Responders are part of the overall EMS system and are dispatched to provide initial care until the ambulance arrives to assist paramedics.
SSM Health Greater Fond du Lac Region gave $4,000 in grant funds to help cover equipment costs. Waupun Fire Chief B.J. DeMaa says when starting a new program, start-up costs can be a hurdle.
He says they were able to purchase medical bags, airway management equipment, stethoscopes, rescue blankets, tourniquets, and pulse oximeters, to just name a few. DeMaa adds that without partners such as SSM Health, it would be difficult to get a program like theirs started.
The City of Waupun is the hub of the Waupun Ambulance District within Fond du Lac County. The service territory of that District not only covers the City of Waupun but also includes the Townships of Alto, Metomen, Oakfield, Springvale, and Waupun, and the Villages of Brandon and Oakfield. The Dodge County Township of Chester and the northeast portion of the Township of Trenton also fall within the District.
DeMaa says in the last year, the District has experienced an 18-percent increase in 911 ambulance calls. He says those trends were occurring even before the pandemic began.