Constantly in Motion
Whidbey Island’s geography presents unique challenges for emergency medical response. For more than 30 years, Whidbey General’s Emergency Medical Services (EMS) has met that challenge, providing timely, efficient and fiscally responsible delivery of emergency medical pre-hospital care.
- When an emergency happens anywhere on the island, three stations — Oak Harbor, Coupeville and Bayview — carefully coordinate the placement and activities of a combined six advanced life support ambulances, thereby minimizing response times elsewhere should additional needs arise.
- During life-threatening emergencies involving burns or major trauma, or for patients requiring surgical care unavailable locally, EMS communicates from the field with Whidbey General emergency department physicians and surgical staff. Then, EMS coordinates transport to the proper facility via ambulance or helicopter.
- Within 30 minutes, EMS service can expand from six full-time ambulances to as many as 12 during times of high call volume or disasters.
- Ambulances are available 24 hours a day to provide emergency and pre-planned inter-facility transfers both on and off the island.
- All paramedics and Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) in Island County follow state- and nationally-recognized medical protocols and work closely with a Medical Program Director who is based at Whidbey General and available 24 hours a day for oversight and advice.
Whidbey General EMS is constantly on the move. When an ambulance responds to an emergency, the system directs other units to where they are most needed to maintain coverage everywhere on the island.