Friday, July 18, 2014
After months of evaluating applicants in the wake of the unexpected closure of its former ambulance company, the Georgetown Hospital System (GHS) has selected ParaBasic Ambulance Service as its new ambulance service provider.
Ann Waters, vice president of operations at Georgetown Memorial Hospital, said after the unexpected resignation of the hospital system’s previous company of 10 years, TransMed, that closed its doors in the middle of the night last December, GHS was flooded with applications for replacements. They had nine proposals to evaluate, she said.
The selection process included evaluating the companies on several characteristics: quality of care, location of the business, cost, professionalism, local company capacity and ethics.
Waters said a multidisciplinary selection committee evaluated the applicants, and the committee found ParaBasic to meet the needs of GHS.
“For quality of care, there was a good satisfaction with services received from ParaBasic. … We found a wide range of professionalism in the companies, but ParaBasic has consistently had professional dress and professional performance, which is important to our patients.
“For company capacity, about half of their employees live in Georgetown County and the majority of their ambulances are in Georgetown County. And they consistently demonstrate ethical behavior.”
Waters said the cost proposal was “very competitive” and ParaBasic is a local company, with an office in Myrtle Beach and headquarters in Andrews, that’s been operating for more than 10 years.
ParaBasic was named the new ambulance service provider “very recently,” she said.
Management at ParaBasic said the company focused on understanding what services a hospital needs, and put its best foot forward during the application process.
“We used [knowledge from employees who used to work for the hospital] to submit a proposal, and put in place the services that we were pretty confident public hospitals needed,” said ParaBasic Director Mike Ostrander.
“When we got involved with the hospital we did a full range of transports they needed, from a wheelchair transport to the most time-critical situation they have, a STEMI [heart attack] patient, in which case we have to be there within five minutes to transport the patient from Waccamaw to Georgetown. Our focus was doing the job, and I guess our judgment about what was needed was pretty good.”
Ostrander said the contract will mean hiring more employees and purchasing more equipment, too.
“It will probably be in the neighborhood, overall, of about 20 to 25 new employees, all within Georgetown County,” he said.
The company has also begun purchasing new equipment, such as a bariatric stretcher, to fulfil its duties at GHS.
Waters said the hospital is eager to begin working with ParaBasic. “We feel very good about it. …We’re really happy to have the selection made. Our doctors are happy and we’ve got a permanent company now. We had to do a lot of due diligence.”
What’s next for ParaBasic?
“Our goal is to exceed their expectations,” said Mark Hess, an advisor to the company.
“We think we’re doing that. So we’re very pleased to have them as a client and they’re good people, they do a quality job and we feel honored to have been selected. Now our job is to over-deliver what they bought.”