Winter’s Expansion of EMS Availability Passes 1st Test

(Jan. 27) – Rep. Faith Winter, D-Westminster, won unanimous Public Health Care and Human Services Committee approval today for her bill to streamline emergency medical services across state lines.

Currently Colorado requires an out-of-state EMS provider to get a 90-day certification and undergo a background check. All of this takes time – up to two days, Rep. Winter testified. Time is exactly what EMS crews don’t have.

Rep. Winter’s bill, HB15-1015, would authorize our governor to enter into a compact with up to 10 other states to allow emergency medical services providers licensed in any compact member state to provide lifesaving services in all member states.

“This bill will help save more lives and will ensure that we have more EMS coverage, especially in times of disaster,” Rep. Winter said. “Areas close to Colorado’s borders could see everyday benefits when EMS providers are able to coordinate services across borders in communities like Durango and Farmington, Fort Collins and Cheyenne, and Trinidad and Raton.”

The bill would also remove legal ambiguities and reduce operating costs for several air ambulance services operating out of Colorado, which bring many out-of-state patients to Colorado hospitals for treatment.

The committee’s 13-0 vote – the first vote on Rep. Winter’s first bill — sent it to the Appropriations Committee.

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