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90th Anniversary

Community report

Our mission is to make a difference by caring for people in need. AMR’s vision outlines the values that guide the company and its employees. Patients, customers, and communities experience peace of mind knowing AMR professionals are ready to serve when needed.

American Medical Response – 90 Years of Serving Our Community In 1922, all ambulance work in Seattle was performed by funeral homes, a common practice at the time. A group of concerned citizens felt this was a conflict of interest and approached the mayor to find a company that would provide ambulance services exclusively. He in turn approached Frank Shepard and Ben Buck, who were both in the business in Portland. Neither wanted to move to Seattle, so they flipped a coin. Shepard lost, packed up and moved to Seattle in 1923. He started Shepard Ambulance out of the county-city building in the Belltown area with just two ambulances. Shepard Ambulance then grew to serve not only the City of Seattle, but also King County. Today, 90 years later, it is the oldest ambulance company in the region – now owned and operated by AMR – and serves twelve Washington state counties with over 150 ambulances and more than 800 employees. Whether you’re a native or a new arrival to Seattle, the Shepard Ambulance history is fascinating. Some examples: When Group Health Cooperative first opened its doors roughly 50 years ago, Shepard was contracted as the cooperative’s ambulance service. This relationship remains strong today. In the late 60’s, Shepard collaborated with then-Bellevue Community College to start the region’s first class to train emergency medical technicians. The three-month program taught technicians how to care for patients in the field —stopping bleeding, resuscitation, etc. Today AMR has one of the most successful EMT training programs in the region. The City of Seattle launched the Medic One program in 1970. While many private ambulance operators in the city saw this new service as a threat, Shepard Ambulance worked with the city to support it and continues this relationship today.

This year we celebrate 90 years of serving the people of our communities. Our mission is to “Make a Difference by Caring for People in Need.” We do this every day by listening to and understanding our patient and customer needs, providing caregivers who are compassionate and professional, and using state-of-the-art tools and best practices. Our patients benefit from expert medical care because we are committed to continuous improvement. “Patient Focused, Customer Centered and Caregiver Inspired,” are our guiding principles. We have been successful at serving our community for these last 90 years because of our amazing caregivers. These EMTs, paramedics, nurses, dispatchers, and support staff bring diverse backgrounds and capabilities. Many have decades of experience serving our communities, including several with more than 35 years working with AMR. Today, AMR is the most frequently requested medical transportation provider for inter-facility and fire department emergency responses in the greater Seattle area. Because of our availability, responsiveness and quality, we are the provider of choice for many regional agencies and institutions. As we look into the future, AMR will continue to be a devoted partner in serving our patients, customers, and communities. We are proud of our team and the critical service they deliver, and hope this report does justice to the hard work and dedication of the AMR family. Respectfully,

Gil Glass General Manager

From two ambulances in Seattle to a statewide presence. 90 YEARS OF LOCAL SERVICE In the 90 years since Frank Shepard started the company with two ambulances in Seattle, American

in 1943, to the adoption of GPS technology in 1993,

Medical Response has grown in this region to serve

to the new power stretchers we recently added to

twelve Washington counties with a fleet of more

reduce back injuries among our emergency medical

than 150 ambulances and more than 800 highly

technicians, paramedics and nurses.

trained employees. Throughout the years, we have pioneered new Our roots run deepest in Seattle, where we have

techniques in emergency medical care. In 1963,

served continuously since 1923. In a cooperative

we partnered with the University of Washington

relationship with the Seattle Fire Department dating

and Bellevue Community College – now known

back to 1969, we now provide over 28,000 patient

as Bellevue College – to begin the first EMT

transports a year. We have also been an active

course in Washington.

contributor to the growth and excellence of the emergency medical system and a partner in the

In 1978 we created the first mobile critical care

greater health care community.

ambulance with nursing staff in the state, allowing for the transfer of intensive-care patients from

Shepard Ambulance became part of the AMR

one hospital to another. Over the years, we have

family in 1997, strengthening our local roots with

expanded that program to include the transfer of

the reach and resources of a national company.

high-risk pediatric and obstetrical patients.

AMR’s local and national success allows us to continually invest in our Washington operations

We also partner the Valley Regional Fire Authority,

and bring an unparalleled level of service to our

King County Zone One fire departments, and South

patients and customers.

King County Fire and Rescue. We currently provide service in Snohomish, Pierce, Thurston, Cowlitz,

We have added technological improvements to our

Lewis, Clark, Grant, Spokane, Yakima, Benton and

fleet, dating from the introduction of radio dispatch

Franklin Counties.


Frank Shepard sits in his


Shepard Ambulance opens in Seattle at 12th and Marion on Capitol Hill.

horse-drawn ambulance in the early 1920’s.


Shepard Ambulance crew demonstrates an early Heart Lung Resuscitator (HLR). The cylinder on the patient’s chest


Shepard Ambulance provides dedicated ambulance services for the World’s Fair in Seattle.

1950’s - Shepard Patch

1985 - Shepard Patch

provided automatic CPR through an attachment to the ambulance crew’s oxygen tank to provide pressure.

2013 - 90th Anniversary Patch


Shepard Ambulance drivers and a manager

Sciences and titled “Accidental Death and

stand by their fleet of Cadillac ambulances.

Disability: The Neglected Disease of Modern

During this decade, the first EMT classes

Society,� the paper stated that in 1965 there

started in an effort to improve pre-hospital

were 52,000,000 accidental injuries. Of these

care, for which there was a clear and abundant

accidental injuries there were 107,000 killed,

need as was shown by the Emergency

more than 10 million disabled and 400,000

Medical Services white paper written in

permanently impaired. The estimated costs

1965. Published by the National Academy of

were $18 billion ($120 billion in 2013 dollars).

AMR is one of the nation’s most admired companies because of the pride of its employees, its loyal customers, its clinical leadership, and its financial success. Our employees are trusted experts, empowered to serve people with compassionate care


and innovative solutions. As the Basic Life Support transport provider for the City of Seattle, we support local fire departments and hospitals by guaranteeing quality, trusted, and reliable service to our region’s residents and visitors.

A COMMITMENT TO CUSTOMER SERVICE AMR delivers the highest level of patient care. We provide ongoing customer service training to every employee and we monitor customer care at every level of the organization. AMR takes extra measures to ensure patients’ rights are maintained at all times. An array of innovative AMR programs meet specific needs of people in our community, such as the Sentimental Journey program, which provides transport for terminally ill or bed-confined patients to events and important places on special occasions. We also have a program that provides immunizations for Seattle’s homeless population.

THE BEST IN THE BUSINESS Our people set us apart. AMR has one of the most experienced, well trained, and dedicated teams in the industry. Our workforce is highly tenured and committed to delivering the highest quality care of any ambulance provider. AMR’s recruitment, screening, and orientation programs ensure we provide the best people in the business to serve our patients and support our employees in the field.

FISCAL SUSTAINABILITY AMR has proven financial strength and a sustainable business model that ensures we can continue to provide exemplary service. AMR has significant reserves of net working capital—an amount unparalleled in the ambulance industry. This allows us to responsibly manage expansion and quickly invest in the equipment, hardware, software, and personnel necessary to start new ventures.

RAPID RESPONSE AMR provides a high level of response time compliance, averaging a 6 minute response time for Seattle fire requests. We analyze our deployment on an ongoing basis to ensure resources are available throughout our service areas, paying particular attention to volume history at specific locations and access to major traffic arteries, as well as mitigating obstacles such as drawbridges, railroad tracks, and construction.

TAKING SAFETY SERIOUSLY AMR has a rigorous program that ensures the safety of our employees, patients, and the communities we serve. Our Safety and Illness Prevention Team identifies and controls occupational safety and health standards, guarantees safety in the handling of every patient, and incorporates policy and initiatives that address vehicle safety, hazardous materials, emergency response, fire prevention and much more.

AMR IN OUR COMMUNITY Above all else, AMR is committed to the people we

exceptional customer service year after year. Our

serve. We are dedicated to our mission of caring for

caregivers and support professionals stay involved with

those in need when serving Seattle residents and

customers, contributing to the health and well-being of

visitors. As neighbors who live and work in the region,

our patients and the community.

we are a strong and dependable community partner. Our customers count on and appreciate our reliability,

Locally, AMR is honored to employ some of the finest

the quality of medical care we provide, our dedication

EMS caregivers in the nation. AMR encourages and

to relationships that benefit all, and the efficiency with

celebrates the level of initiative taken every day by our

which we operate.

crews. These dedicated men and women inspire us all through their selfless acts both on and off the job. We

Our persistent commitment to patient care has made

work closely with fire departments and area agencies to

AMR an integral service provider to many cities,

offer valuable programs to build relationships between

hospitals, and skilled nursing facilities in the region.

EMS systems, the health care community, and area

We value our long-standing relationships with our local

residents and visitors. We take pride in the roots we have

healthcare partners and our patients, and it is through

established in Seattle and the contributions we continue

these collaborative efforts that we are able to deliver

to make throughout the region.

As the only private, accredited communications center in the Puget Sound region, our state-of-theart call and dispatch center ensures that we can respond to emergencies as quickly and accurately as possible. Offering exceptional customer service, our highly trained employees are there for patients in need 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

AMR partners with both Seattle Children’s and Swedish Hospitals to provide transport of neonatal and pediatric patients throughout the greater Puget Sound Region. These critical care ambulances are specifically designed to assist infants in need of advanced care and transportation. Through these partnerships, Children’s, Swedish and AMR currently transport nearly 500 patients annually.

Every holiday season AMR caregivers collect toys for the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve’s Toys for Tots program. Last year, AMR Seattle collected more than eight ambulances full of toys.

AMR was proud to host Autism Speaks 2013, an event that brings awareness and support to the Autism Association. Inspired by an AMR EMT with children on the autism spectrum, AMR ambulances were adorned with Autism Speaks decals to help promote the cause.

AMR operations – locally and across the nation – hold fundraising events, create special vehicles to raise awareness, and honor friends and loved ones in recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

AMR’s cct program 35 years strong This year also marks the 35th anniversary of AMR’s Critical Care Transport (CCT) program. As medical technologies advanced, patients began to require critical care transportation between facilities to receive CT scans, MRIs, and Cardiac Catheter services. Thirty-five years ago, Shepard Ambulance paired a nurse with an EMT, creating the first CCT unit in Seattle. Today, AMR operates 9 CCT units at peak, with a staff of 24 RNs. CCT ambulances are intensive care units on wheels, providing the most clinically sophisticated level of ambulance service available. These units are used

Our teams are qualified and prepared to make split-

to transport critically ill patients between critical or

second, medically appropriate treatment decisions

intensive care units, while providing constant medical

while in transit. CCT ambulances carry an extensive

attention throughout the journey. Each CCT team

inventory of medical equipment—similar to that found

includes a registered nurse with advanced training and

in an ICU, but designed to be used under the rigors of

certification in caring for patients during transport.

a mobile environment.

EQUIPMENT ENHANCEMENTS AMR continually seeks and implements the latest advancements in technology for our ambulances, deployment planning, medical equipment and fleet diagnostics tools. Recently, AMR ambulances were equipped with Stryker PowerPro XT gurneys, which can be raised and lowered by hydraulic power. The switch to battery-powered lifting gurneys is intended to reduce employee injuries and improve patient comfort and safety. Stryker Stair-Pro stair chairs are also being used to assist in moving patients up and down stairs with ease. We’re committed to providing an environmentally friendly and economically responsible approach for our fleet operations in Seattle. Working with the nation’s leading equipment manufacturers, AMR is driving the case for ‘green’ alternatives whenever possible.

IN RURAL PIERCE COUNTY, AMR HELPS KEEP CITIZENS SAFE Today, AMR provides secondary emergency medical services for many of its customers in Washington, working in cooperation with local fire departments. But in rural Pierce County, it serves as the primary provider for a cooperative partnership of communities, including Greenwater, Carbonado, and the City of Buckley.

frequently require emergency assistance in remote and challenging circumstances. With AMR’s help,

The City of Buckley’s cooperative operating

the county is able to provide and sustain services for

agreement with AMR has produced a number of

these vast and popular destinations.

successes for the city, including response goals being met and an efficient and cost-effective emergency medical service program for the community. Not only do the citizens of Buckley benefit from the cost-effective model, the quality of service available in the city is exceptional.

As an organization that is dedicated to its patients, customers and caregivers, AMR continues to seek avenues to integrate even further into the communities in which we operate. The collaborative relationship that AMR has with the City of Buckley and other partners in the region

The partnership in Pierce County also covers a broad

is just one example of the efforts taken to ensure

area that includes the Crystal Mountain ski resort

the best service is being met for customers

and parts of Mount Rainier National Park, which

throughout the Pacific Northwest.

OUR LOCAL PARTNERSHIPS AMR’s support of local fire departments allows fire

We offer citizens a trusted, reliable and accountable

fighters and 911 paramedics to quickly and seamlessly

system-specific experience. We continue to expand

focus on emergencies and other major events. We

our regional EMS and BLS knowledge and resources

work directly with these fire departments to improve

throughout the area.

service for residents and visitors. We build partnerships by providing quality patient care and focusing on professionalism, communication and collaboration. When an EMS team succeeds, patients and entire communities benefit.

AMR also provides ground transportation for Airlift Northwest crews when they touch down at Boeing Field, the Harborview Helipad, and other landing points. Airlift is the premier rotary and fixed-wing air ambulance company in the Northwest. AMR’s role is to provide ground transport and support for the Airlift teams when they are transporting patients to area hospitals. AMR and Airlift work closely in training, safety and patient transportation.

AMR ambulances work in tandem with the City of Seattle Fire Department to aid and transport the sick and injured.




San Juan

AMR serves 12 major

an average of 125,000


Chelan Jefferson

Douglas Kitsap

Mason Grays Harbor Kittitas Thurston





Cowlitz Skamania Klickitat Clark

AMR provides services in more than 2,100 communities nationwide in 40 states and the District of Columbia.









United States of America




200,000 transports per year.


Pend Oreille



transports annually. Statewide, AMR handles



counties in Washington. AMR Seattle dispatches



Walla Walla



AMR National By the numbers 16,458 employees

2,100 communities =100

3,000,000+ transports

in 2012


4,270 vehicles =1,000 =100,000


Our national headquarters supports more than 200

In Seattle and King County, AMR benefits from the

to Miami and hundreds of communities in between.

expertise and resources of our national organization,

We’ve built our reputation by focusing on strong local

Envision Healthcare. Nationally, our company has

leadership and by creating a deep connection with

extensive experience serving a variety of communities

every community we serve. All across the country,

using different models and systems. In Seattle, we

our focus is clear. We are Patient Focused, Customer

can tap into this range of expertise to support system

Centered, and Caregiver Inspired. We embrace

improvements and to ensure the use of best practices

these values on every call we respond to, in every

throughout our operations.

community we work in, on every day of the year.

community-based AMR operations—from Seattle

AMR, serving you now and in the future

I’ve worked here for 35 years as an EMT, field training officer, field supervisor and communications director. I wouldn’t work anywhere else. AMR

The entire AMR team is committed to serving our patients and health care partners with the best possible care. We’re an experienced team of professionals focused on improving quality and efficiency and dedicated to reducing costs. We are

has supported me personally and

honored to have earned the enduring trust

professionally for many years. I love

of the communities we serve.

having a job where I can give back to

Our Seattle team is proud to work for a

my fellow employees and patients.

company that has served Seattle and King

- Greg Sim, Chief Operations Supervisor

County for 90 years and counting.

Patient Focused. Customer Centered. Caregiver Inspired.

13075 Gateway Dr. S. Suite 100 Seattle, WA 98168 206.444.4440

AMR 90th Anniversary Community Report 2013