JAVAC to be operational again on limited basis

JOHNSTOWN — The Johnstown Area Volunteer Ambulance Corps will be operational again to serve the city in a cooperative agreement it is trying to work out with Empire Ambulance of Troy.

JAVAC board President Duane Abbott said today that the agreement will be similar to what Empire is doing assisting the Ambulance Service of Fulton County. Both the Gloversville-based ASFC and JAVAC closed their businesses earlier this year for financial reasons.

Abbott said he’s currently “under negotiations” with Empire to have that unit take over JAVAC’s Certificate of Need.

“We’re falling under the umbrella of Empire,” he said. “It’s good news for Fulton County.”

Fulton County Emergency Management Director Steven Santa Maria said today that the city Fire Department ambulance service will still be the main operating agency for Johnstown.

Santa Maria issued a news release Tuesday indicating that at about 2 p.m., his office was notified by the state Department of Health that JAVAC was “once again operational,” but at the basic life support level only. He said its operating territory will remain the city of Johnstown and a “very small” portion of the town of Johnstown.

“It’s really Empire Ambulance operating under JAVAC’s certificate,” Santa Maria said.

“The city of Johnstown Fire Department provides advanced life support care and remains the primary response agency for the city of Johnstown,” the release said. “The Greater Amsterdam Volunteer Ambulance Corps also provides advanced life support care and will be the secondary agency for the city of Johnstown.”

Santa Maria said GAVAC remains the only agency that has operating authority to provide ALS care on a countywide basis.

Other agencies that provide ALS care are the St. Johnsville Volunteer Ambulance Corps and the Mohawk Valley Ambulance Corps. Both will continue to operate and provide EMS service to the western part of Fulton County, along with GAVAC, the release said.

Santa Maria said Empire staff will be using JAVAC’s ambulances out of North Perry Street.

Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at [email protected]

By Josh Bovee

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