EMS Deputy Chief's Message

“To provide quick, efficient, professional emergency medical services, transport, and community education with the highest standards of excellence.” This has been Western Lane Ambulance District’s Mission statement for the past four decades.  Realizing that we will never be perfect, it is the pursuit of perfection that drives our organization to excellence.

I’d like to take this opportunity to update the citizens of our District in how we strive for that excellence. Currently, we have 16 full-time Medics to provide care and 8 part-time Medics.  Of those 16 employees, 10 are critically care trained to give an even higher level of care versus the standard certified Medics. Critical Care Paramedics are trained in hemodynamic monitoring, ventilator management, expanded IV medication infusions, as well as more education on human pathophysiology. The dedication and training that goes into this is an immense undertaking. The employees demonstrate this dedication daily – they truly want the best for their patients and work hard behind the scenes to pursue that perfection.

To further our patient care, the District has always strived to have the best medical equipment and ambulances available. We have been fortunate enough to add two new ambulances – one as a primary unit, and one for hospital transfers. To date, our fleet consists of two transfer ambulances, three fully-equipped first out ambulances, and a Rescue vehicle for sand dune patient extrications.

Currently, Western Lane Ambulance District and Siuslaw Valley Fire are approaching the end of the first year of our inter-governmental agreement (IGA). The IGA adopted by both Boards in July of 2016 has been challenging of which these challenges were anticipated.  It is a concept that other agencies have done, some successfully and others not. The management team continues to address issues that arise. We strive to correct and improve the working relationship. Although we have experienced some difficulties in this IGA, there have been no setbacks in our level of service. Moving forward, I only see operations between the two improving. We have been able to rebuild relationships, and build our agencies together for the common goal of our communities’ stakeholders. The management team continually evaluates the IGA to ensure we are meeting the objectives and planning for future objectives.

WLAD has been very fortunate to have long tenure Board Members who understand the importance of our mission statement. The WLAD Board is always supportive of our employees, ensuring that their needs are met, while remaining diligent about providing resources. WLAD Board is always conscientious of the taxpayers, always keeping financial accountability, oversight, and long term planning for the District. As I approach 20 years with WLAD, it is a source of pride that our Board supports our staff, and ensuring the tools are in place in pursuit of perfection.

Our Public Education and Public Information programs will be rolling out new projects and new materials for the next year. This is exciting for me as we have always tried to demonstrate what services we provide to our stakeholders.

Also, I want to address the Mobile Integrate Health Program (Community Paramedic). In conjunction with PeaceHealth, this program started in the fiscal year of 2017-2018. Funding is nearly complete on securing appropriate financing for this position, a two-year pilot program with the goal of making a mainstay of care for our residents.

With my recent promotion into the Deputy Chief position, my goal has only strengthened in providing the best EMS service for our community members. I’m not only envisioning us meeting our mission statement to the community, I see us continuing that pursuit of perfection in all levels of Western Lane Ambulance District.


Matt House
Deputy Chief
Western Lane Fire and EMS Authority

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