New York City and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) have partnered to bring 250 more ambulances and approximately 500 more emergency medical technicians (EMTs) and paramedics to New York City. This will help the city increase capacity for medical transport between medical sites and assist the Fire Department (FDNY) with responding to a record number of medical calls due to the COVID-19 virus, the city announced. These ambulances come fully staffed by paramedics and EMTs from around the country.
“Our EMTs and paramedics are doing unbelievable work under the toughest of circumstances," said Mayor Bill de Blasio. "This week, I promised them help was on the way, and today it is. Our partnership with FEMA will give our first responders the help they need to continue being the heroes of our city."
New York is the state most affected by the COVID-19 virus. New York State had 83,712 cases as of April 1. Of these, New York City had 45,707 cases and 1,374 deaths. Last week, New York City reported at one of its mechanics working on ambulances died from the virus, and many other fleet employees are battling it.
During this crisis, EMS has been responding to a record number of medical emergencies each day — a 50% increase over normal daily call volume.