Fire units get voice at state level


Fire and rescue companies in Washington County will have a greater voice on the statewide level in paramedic Alan Butsch, who was recently named emergency medical services coordinator for the Washington County Volunteer Fire and Rescue Association.

Butsch, 34, of Hagerstown, started the part-time job in March and was given the task of being an advocate for local fire and rescue companies to local and state organizations.

He also attends meetings as a representative of the association with such groups as the Maryland Institute for Emergency Medical Service Systems, the Washington County Commissioners and Washington County Hospital.

The job takes about 32 to 36 hours a week, he said.

Butsch, who also has firefighter training, was formerly a member of the Williamsport and Clear Spring ambulance companies.

A 1988 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania with a degree in political science, Butsch is employed full time by the Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Association.


He said he wanted the job as EMS coordinator for the "different challenges it represents."

One of the first projects in which Butsch participated as EMS coordinator involved developing a contingency plan for times when Washington County Hospital is filled to capacity, he said.

Butsch sat on a committee that determined where patients should be taken and what criteria should be used to determine that.

Another issue he will be working with is a state-mandated "quality improvement plan," designed to improve fire and rescue service to the public and examine treatment trends.

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