Sept 28 Webinar: Fallon Ambulance on Alternative Destinations

Join Patrick “Sean” Tyler, executive vice president and chief operating officer of Fallon Ambulance Service, on September 28 for Alternative Pathways to Care: The Massachusetts Experience. Alternative Pathways to Care: The Massachusetts Experience Speaker: P. Sean Tyler, Fallon Ambulance September 28 at 2:00 PM ET $99 for Members | $199 for non-Members REGISTER NOW► EMS systems around the US have historically been incentivized by Center for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS), private insurers and other payers to transport all patients encountered through accessing 911 emergency call systems, to an acute care facility emergency department (ED). The reimbursement model for ambulance services in place currently only provides payment for transport of any patient to a state licensed ED according to CMS. The changing healthcare system in the US, through the Affordable Care Act (ACA) 2010, looks to healthcare systems and contractors to provide healthcare at a lower cost. CMS is prescribed, as part of the ACA, to test innovative delivery models to reduce program expenditures…while preserving or enhancing quality of care furnished to individuals.” This session will review the concepts and programs of implementing a modified system of care whereas trained EMS providers, under the supervision of a physician Medical Director, can transport patients experiencing a (more…)

Massachusetts Passes the Pay Equity Act

This past week the Massachusetts State Legislature unanimously passed, and Governor Baker signed into law the Pay Equity Act, making Massachusetts the first state in the nation to have legislation that prohibits employers from asking candidates about their salary history at their current or prior jobs.  Instead, the hiring manager needs to offer the candidate a wage based upon the value of the work being performed rather than being based on the candidate’s current earnings. The new law, which takes effect on August 1, 2017, seeks to strengthen protections provided under federal equal pay laws.  The provisions of the Massachusetts law are that employers may not discriminate on the basis of gender as it relates to wages for “comparable work.”  The law also prohibits employers from restricting employee’s right to discuss wages with co-workers.  This provision echoes other federal laws that protect some employees when discussing wages.  The intent is that wage transparency will help reduce pay disparities amongst those in similar jobs. The Massachusetts law encourages employers to perform wage analyses for positions within their organizations.  Further, if disparities are found, employers may be able to mitigate potential damages by showing that the assessment was performed and that they...

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“Save Lives, Not Seconds” member editorial

Don’t miss the fantastic member-written editorial, Save lives, not seconds, in Wednesday’s Boston Globe. Submitted by Cataldo Ambulance’s Tom Kimball, it gets to the heart of many issues with using response times as the only performance metric. (Emphasis below is ours.) Many cities and towns in Massachusetts still judge the performance of their ambulance services using metrics like response times, which can miss the point. An additional two minutes waiting for an ambulance will rarely make a difference for a trauma patient facing emergency surgery that may take hours. Patient outcome is a more valuable measure of whether a medical service is doing right by people. In many areas of health care these days, it is the gold standard, a key factor in determining how much insurance companies pay service providers. Changing the terms of ambulance companies’ contracts to make good patient outcomes the goal could greatly improve the quality of medical care across the state — and save lives. Read the full editorial over at the Boston Globe. 

Spotlight: Sean Kukauskas

Sean Kukauskas Boston, MA, USA Director of Ambulance Services, Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital Member, AAA Education & Membership Committee Tell us a little about yourself, please. I was born and raised in Massachusetts. I have three children, two boys and a daughter. My oldest son, Tyler (20 years old), is in the U.S. Army stationed at Ft. Bliss in Texas. My daughter, Kaylin (19 years old), is a college student, and my youngest son, Sean, is 14 and will be a high school freshman this fall. I am an avid long distance runner. I recently completed my first marathon earlier this year, the 2015 Boston Marathon. How did you come to work in the industry? How long have you been involved? After high school I joined the U.S. Navy as a mechanical calibration technician for nuclear powered submarines. After getting out of the service, I eventually found myself looking for a solid career. I always had an interest in medicine, so a friend of mine who was an EMT helped me get into EMT school. I have been involved in EMS since then, eventually earning my certification as a Paramedic. I just celebrated my 23rd year in EMS. I spent the majority of my career (more…)