Request for Proposals - Ambulance Transport and Paramedic Services

Background:

The City of Buckley, located in the scenic Pierce County region of Washington State, is a rapidly growing community that is dedicated to providing high-quality emergency services to its residents and neighboring areas. With a current estimated population of 5,500, the city has experienced a significant 22% population increase between 2003 and 2023. This growth has contributed to a substantial rise in emergency medical service (EMS) demands.

In 2023, the City of Buckley Fire Department responded to 1,530 emergency calls, marking a 74% increase in EMS-related incidents and a 58% overall increase in call volume over the past decade. This surge underscores the critical need for enhanced ambulance transport services to ensure prompt and efficient medical care for the community.

The City of Buckley Fire Department is staffed by a dedicated team of 64 volunteer firefighters and 6.25 full-time employees, including the Fire Chief, Assistant Chief, three full-time firefighters, a part-time administrative assistant, and a full-time Volunteer Recruitment and Retention Coordinator. The latter position is significantly supported by a FEMA grant, covering 75% of the costs, awarded in 2023 and extending through 2027.

Our fire department provides comprehensive fire protection and EMS within the incorporated boundaries of the City of Buckley and the Town of Wilkeson through a contractual relationship. Additionally, we offer administrative and operational oversight to the Town of Carbonado Fire Department. The City of Buckley Fire Department also extends its support to the neighboring communities of Greenwater and Crystal Mountain, as well as collaborates with East Pierce Fire and Rescue for mutual aid services.

Given the increasing call volumes and expanding service areas, the City of Buckley is seeking proposals from qualified ambulance transport service providers to enhance our capacity to deliver critical EMS support to our community and surrounding regions. This initiative aims to ensure that our growing population continues to receive timely and effective emergency medical care, maintaining our commitment to public safety and health.

Ambulance Transport and Paramedic Services RFP Overview

The City of Buckley is open to a variety of service models to provide Advanced Life Support (ALS) and Basic Life Support (BLS) services, striving to deliver the best possible care to its constituents. Currently, the City operates one  ALS ambulance and two BLS units. To enhance our EMS capabilities, we are seeking proposals that may include the following frameworks, while also welcoming other creative solutions:

Paramedic Services Only: The City would provide the necessary apparatus and non-paramedic personnel, requiring the contractor to supply paramedic services. Under this proposal, the City has the ability to furnish crew quarters at the City of Buckley Fire Station.

Apparatus and Paramedic Services: The City would supply the driver, utilizing either volunteer or paid city staff, while the contractor provides the apparatus and paramedic services. Under this proposal, the City has the ability to furnish crew quarters at the City of Buckley Fire Station

Self-Functioning ALS or BLS Transport: The contractor would operate independently of the City, with a cost-sharing model to ensure sustainability and efficiency.

This RFP seeks innovative and effective proposals to enhance our emergency medical services, ensuring that the growing population of Buckley and surrounding areas continues to receive timely and high-quality care.

Scope of Services

  1. Service Areas:
    • City of Buckley
    • Town of Wilkeson
    • Town of Carbonado
    • Pierce County Fire District 25
    • Pierce County Fire District 26
    • Mount Rainier National Park
    • Neighboring areas as outlined in interlocal agreements
  2. Services Required:
    • 24/7 emergency medical response
    • Patient assessment, treatment, and transportation
    • Compliance with all relevant federal, state, and local regulations
    • Collaboration with local fire departments and other emergency services
  3. Dispatch Protocols:
    • Respond to all EMS calls as directed by local communications centers
    • Mutual aid and automatic aid in accordance with existing agreements

Proposal Requirements

  1. Company Profile:
    • Legal name and address
    • Contact information
    • Brief history and overview of the company
    • Proof of licensure and certification to operate in Pierce County, Washington.
  2. Experience and Qualifications:
    • Detailed experience in providing EMS
    • References from similar contracts
    • Certifications and training of personnel
    • Demonstrated ability to meet industry standards of quality and care
  3. Operational Plan:
    • Staffing plan, including qualifications of EMTs and paramedics
    • Schedule and shift details
    • Equipment and ambulance details
    • Procedures for ensuring timely response to calls
    • Quality assurance and improvement programs
  4. Financial Proposal:
    • Detailed cost proposal including any subsidies required
    • Billing practices and compliance with applicable laws
    • Rate schedule for services provided
    • Financial stability and capacity to deliver the services
  5. Compliance:
    • Agreement to comply with all relevant federal, state, and local regulations, including anti-kickback statutes
    • Evidence of insurance coverage as specified in this RFP
  6. Additional Considerations:
    • Plan for integration with local emergency services
    • Dispatch and communication services
    • Training programs for EMS personnel
    • Crew quarters and housing provisions if applicable

Evaluation Criteria

Proposals will be evaluated based on the following criteria:

  1. Experience and Qualifications: Demonstrated capability and experience in providing high-quality EMS.
  2. Operational Plan: Adequacy and feasibility of the operational plan to meet the needs of the service areas.
  3. Financial Proposal: Cost-effectiveness and transparency of the financial proposal.
  4. Compliance and Insurance: Adherence to compliance requirements and adequacy of insurance coverage.
  5. Integration and Collaboration: Ability to integrate with local emergency services and provide comprehensive training and support.

Terms and Conditions

The City of Buckley reserves the right to reject any and all proposals, to waive any informality in the proposals received, and to accept the proposal that, in its judgment, best serves the interests of the City and its residents. This RFP does not commit the City to award a contract, to pay any costs incurred in the preparation of a proposal, or to procure or contract for services.

Insurance:

The selected contractor shall be required to obtain and maintain insurance appropriate for their respective operations.

a. Commercial General Liability Insurance:

  • Coverage for bodily injury, property damage, personal injury, and employment practices using an occurrence policy.
  • Coverage amount: No less than three million dollars ($3,000,000.00) combined single limit for each occurrence.
  • This coverage shall either be endorsed with the following specific language or contain equivalent language:
    1. In the absence of incidental medical malpractice coverage required above, professional liability insurance for all activities of the insuring party related to services provided under this agreement. Coverage amount: No less than three million dollars ($3,000,000.00) combined single limit for each occurrence. Such insurance may be provided on a claims-made basis.

b. Automobile Liability Coverage:

  • Coverage for bodily injury and property damage.
  • Coverage amount: No less than one million dollars ($1,000,000.00) combined single limit for each occurrence.
  • Coverage shall include owned, hired, and non-owned vehicles.

c. Workers' Compensation Coverage:

  • Coverage with statutory limits as required by the Labor Code of the State of Washington.

 

Qualification Requirements

The proposal evaluation process implemented by the City shall be a “Qualification Based Selection.” The City reserves the right to make a selection directly from the proposal, or to require an interview of the top firms. The City will make recommendations to the City Council, which will award the work. Contract negotiations will proceed with the firm receiving the City Council award. The City reserves the right to negotiate final contract, scope of work, schedule, and fee with the selected firm(s). 

The City encourages disadvantaged, minority, and women-owned consultant firms to respond. The City reserves the right to reject any and all submittals that are not responsive to this request for Proposals                                          

This RFP aims to establish a partnership with a qualified EMS provider to ensure the safety and well-being of the residents and visitors in the service areas. We look forward to receiving comprehensive and competitive proposals from interested and qualified providers.

Submission Details

Proposals must be submitted no later than August 12, 2024 to:

 

City of Buckley Attn: Fire Chief

 611 South Division Street Buckley, WA 98321

 

Proposals should be sealed and clearly marked "Proposal for Ambulance Services." Electronic submissions may also be accepted at tzumek@cityofbuckley.com, provided they meet the deadline and format requirements.

 

Timeline

RFP Issuance: July 8, 2024

Deadline for Questions: July 24, 2024

Proposal Submission Deadline: August 12, 2024 at 2pm.

 

Contact Information

Questions must be submitted in writing to: Treva Zumek, City Clerk

-        Email: tzumek@cityofbuckley.com

-        Phone: (360) 761-7801

-        Postal: PO Box 1960, 933 Main Street, Buckley WA 98321