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All County Ambulance

All County Ambulance

All County Ambulance

When a former employee filed a safety complaint to OSHA in 2008 about All County Ambulance, it got management's attention. The private medical transportation firm with a staff of 125 immediately conducted an internal investigation to review its entire safety program.

When a former employee filed a safety complaint to OSHA in 2008 about All County Ambulance, it got management's attention. The private medical transportation firm with a staff of 125 immediately conducted an internal investigation to review its entire safety program. The company was within OSHA compliance, yet what it discovered was a deficiency in blood-borne pathogen training, an essential skill for its employees who are in direct contact with approximately 22,000 patients annually from Martin, St. Lucie, Indian River, Okeechobee and Hendry counties.

Eddie Szymczyk, All County Ambulance's vice president, said last year's internal investigation was a wake-up call, especially since it thought its safety management system was a solid one. "There were nights I couldn’t sleep. It was during the investigation that we solicited the help of USF SafetyFlorida. We wanted to exceed the requirements of OSHA and become a leader in our industry for safety."

That it did. With help from USF SafetyFlorida, All County Ambulance upgraded its safety and health management system to include a more comprehensive exposure control program. "We developed a strategic outline. From biohazard bags in all of our vehicles specifically for containing and minimizing any exposures, to the reporting and tracking of each event, we put together a comprehensive plan that will ensure the safety of all of our crewmembers and patients." The company also paid to retrain its own 53 employees in exposure control to ensure better procedures occur when an exposure takes place. After meeting an essential list of safety management criteria as evaluated by USF SafetyFlorida, in 2009, All County Ambulance earned its first SHARP award.

Szymczyk says having USF SafetyFlorida consultant Jessica Bohan on his team is invaluable. "I'm a lot happier and more confident since we've gone back and reviewed our systems," says Szymczyk. "Jessica was really phenomenal, and the resources USF SafetyFlorida provided were extremely helpful. We borrowed five videos from them to use in our training."

Szymszyk says more small businesses should take advantage of USF SafetyFlorida's resources. "The program is free. Safety is less expensive when you address it beforehand. It costs more money in the long run when there's an injury, accident or fine."