UPPER FREEHOLD – Municipal officials in Upper Freehold Township have confirmed a new partnership that is now providing emergency medical services to residents.
In a letter to residents, Mayor Stephen J. Alexander, Deputy Mayor LoriSue H. Mount, Committeeman Robert Faber, Committeeman Dr. Robert A. Frascella and Committeeman Stanley Maslowski Jr. said, “Providing 24-hour EMS coverage to residents is the Township Committee’s top priority.
“The decline with enlisting new first aid volunteers in recent years necessitated the process of exploring an alternative solution to providing steady service to ensure 24-hour EMS coverage for our community.
“For the past year, Robert Wood Johnson provided 12-hour EMS coverage for Upper Freehold Township and Allentown and that one-year agreement has come to an end.
“In coordination and cooperation with Allentown and the Allentown First Aid Squad over the
past few years, we advertised our need for 24-hour EMS coverage. The governing bodies of Upper Freehold Township and Allentown are pleased to announce they have jointly awarded the contract to Capital Health EMS.
“This partnership will enable our current volunteers to provide services for community outreach. Capital Health will house their ambulance and emergency medical technicians at the Allentown First Aid Squad.
“This agreement is possible due to the collaborative efforts among Upper Freehold Township, Allentown, the Allentown First Aid Squad and Capital Health, all working together to provide high-quality care for our residents.
“On behalf of the entire Township Committee, we want to thank the first aid squad for their volunteer support for all these years to the benefit of all of the residents of Upper Freehold Township,” the committee members said.
The new partnership with Capital Health began at midnight Feb. 1.
Jim Boozan, the director of EMS at Capital Health, said ambulances from Capital Health are now providing emergency medical services to Allentown and Upper Freehold. He said Capital Health EMS will provide service 24 hours a day and will work in conjunction with the Allentown First Aid Squad.
Boozan said patients who are transported by ambulance will be taken to the medical center of their choosing whenever possible.
“You want to take them where they want to go, where their physician is, where their medical records are,” he said.
In January, Allentown officials indicated their intention to enter into the agreement with Upper Freehold and Capital Health and were expected to formalize the agreement this week.
Allentown will be responsible for paying 27% of the total annual cost of the contract with Capital Health EMS and Upper Freehold will be responsible for paying 73% of the total annual cost of the contract, according to borough officials.
Council members have pledged to make an annual contribution of $6,000 to the Allentown First Aid Squad so it can continue its community education and outreach, its attendance at annual community events and sporting events, its maintenance of a youth cadet program, its cardiopulmonary resuscitation classes and the use of its community room.
The council members asked Upper Freehold officials to make an annual contribution to the first aid squad since the services noted above are provided to the benefit of both communities.