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Staffing Issues During COVID

Many fire and EMS departments are facing staffing challenges with the dramatic increase in COVID cases. As a reminder, the Ohio Division of EMS has lowered the minimum staffing requirements for an Ambulance. Below are the requirements, as well as the required form.

Additionally, The Ohio Fire Chiefs' Association State Emergency Response System personnel are working to track first responder staffing issues throughout Ohio to try to project and address any staffing needs. So that they can have a full assessment, please consider completing this simple survey at least weekly by 10:00 AM each Wednesday. More frequent completion is preferred, especially if you have staff shortages from pre COVID-19 levels. Also, please help by distributing this survey throughout your region. 


Minimum Staffing of an Ambulance During COVID Requirements:

  1. EMS agencies must exhaust all efforts with current staffing, mutual aid agreements, and consultation with the local county Emergency Management Agency before falling below minimum staffing. 
  2. At least one certified EMT, advanced EMT, or paramedic must be monitoring the patient during transport. 
  3. The driver must receive and have documented training on the operation of an emergency vehicle, moving a patient on and off the cot, and loading and unloading the cot.  
  4. Minimum staffing shall only be used to maintain normal operations. It is not to be used to add additional units or to reduce operating costs.
  5. The EMS agency’s medical director shall be notified immediately if staffing is reduced to minimum levels.

The Division of EMS shall be notified immediately in order to help assess the scope of any staffing shortages statewide. PLEASE email this completed form to

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