SANTA BARBARA COUNTY, Calif. – American Medical Response (AMR) is officially taking legal action after the County of Santa Barbara awarded the exclusive ambulance service contract to Santa Barbara County Fire Department on Thursday.
AMR filed a lawsuit in Santa Barbara Superior Court on Thursday alleging that County officials violated the EMS act in awarding the ambulance contract to Santa Barbara County Fire Department on Sep. 19.
The unanimous decision from the County Board of Supervisors triggered a series of responses from interested parties and your News Channel broke the story of the impending litigation the same week the decision was released.
Despite independent evaluators awarding a higher score to AMR's ambulance service proposal, the County ambulance service was converted to a permit system that AMR alleges is a violation of the California Emergency Medical Services Authority Act (EMS Act).
“Because the County and the Fire Department were unsatisfied with the outcome of the competitive RFP process, they discarded it with a clear agenda – to award a sole operating permit to the Fire Department,” said Michael Rice, Vice President of Operations for AMR. "Our exceptional 40-year reputation for clinical care stands as a testament to our dedicated employees. We owe it to them and the community to continue providing outstanding service while unwaveringly fighting for what we firmly believe is right for this community.”