By Vanesa Brashier, firstname.lastname@example.org
A new ambulance service will start on Jan. 1, 2020, in the City of Dayton, replacing the current service provided by Liberty County EMS. Dayton City Council on Monday, Nov. 18, approved a $45,000 per year contract with Allegiance Mobile Health.
While Allegiance Mobile Health was not the lowest bidder, the company outmatched the competition with service commitments and expertise, according to Dayton Police Chief Robert Vine, who headed the committee tasked with reviewing and ranking all four bidders.
“Two of the four submitting organizations were selected to participate in the interview phase and background phase. The selection of these two organizations was based exclusively on the affordability of their submitted bids,” said Vine, presenting the committee’s findings to Dayton City Council. “As a result of the interview process, one organization stood out as having more experience at providing 911 emergency medical services to both municipalities and counties, documented service levels, customer service standards and organizational values that aligned themselves with those held by the City of Dayton.”
The bidders were asked to submit quotes on two options. Option 1 provides one dedicated ambulance in the City of Dayton with a backup ambulance staffed and at the station within the city limits. The standby ambulance would be called upon with the primary ambulance was unable to respond due to other commitments in the city. Option 2 was for two dedicated ambulances and one backup ambulance. The city opted for Option 1 because Option 2 was too costly.
City Ambulance and Allegiance Mobile Health took part in the interviews as their bids for Option 1 were $40,000 and $45,000, respectively. Windsor EMS was the third-highest bidder and Liberty County EMS was the highest with a bid of $517,218 annually.
Once the bids were narrowed to the two, an interview panel was organized with Vine, Fire Chief Murphy Green, Police Capt. John Coleman and Councilman Alvin Burress, who is also a firefighter. The finalists were asked to answer a series of questions that took up five pages, Vine said.
“Allegiance Mobile Health advised that, if awarded the contract, the police dispatch would have access to their computer-aided dispatched system, which would allow the dispatchers to see the ambulance’s location and the status of each ambulance in and around the area,” the chief said. “The City would also be allowed to place a logo or graphic on the side of the ambulance if so desired. Monthly compliance meetings would be held with the stakeholders for the purpose of sharing information and maintaining quality control. Allegiance also advised they would work with the first responder group and help train them and be a resource.”
As Allegiance Mobile Health began to emerge as the frontrunner, the Committee reached out to other cities and counties served by the company to gauge their satisfaction with their contracts with Allegiance.
Vine interviewed city and county leaders in Polk County, Panola County and the City of Cleveland, among others, and all reported they are happy with the level of service provided by Allegiance Mobile Health.
The police and fire chief for the City of Cleveland, which switched from Liberty County EMS to Allegiance Mobile Health in recent months, reportedly told Vine they are happy with the service so far and have no complaints.
“While under contract with the former provider, they were not getting the service they needed and had to frequently use Montgomery County EMS to fill in for the lack of service. It was reported to us that since Allegiance took over, they have not had to call on Montgomery County EMS one time,” Vine said.
Daniel Gillespie, chief operating officer of Allegiance Mobile Health, explained to Council that the average response time for an ambulance in Cleveland is now less than four minutes.
“The team has done an exceptional job in Cleveland … We’ve far exceeded all our compliance standards,” Gillespie said.
According to Gillespie, Allegiance Mobile Health has 911 contracts in roughly 600 communities throughout the state of Texas. The company has a fleet of close to 300 units and has 1,000 employees.