State of the art ambulance now on the road

| 21/05/2014

(CNS): The Cayman Islands Health Services Authority (HSA) has bought a new customized ambulance which is already on the road responding to emergency call outs. The US$151,000 Chevy 4500 Traumahawk was described by officials as the ‘best fit’ for local needs and it will also allow an older ambulance to act as a spare when one of the more modern units is undergoing maintenance or out of action for any other reason. The state of the art ambulance means Cayman now has four emergency vehicles on the road and Stephen Duval, Manager of the HSA’s Emergency Medical Services (EMS) said it will greatly enhance the team’s capabilities in emergency situations.

“The ambulance is a Chevy 4500 Traumahawk series which is similar to our other two models that we currently have operational. The exterior features more lights which are maintenance-free LEDs, as well as additional high visibility graphics. Inside there is improved access for patients entering and exiting the vehicle and better ergonomics for patients and staff as well as mounted and secured equipment.  There are also console navigational and communication systems, as well as a reverse camera.  We were able to customize this vehicle to meet our needs, making this ambulance the best fit for our EMS unit,” Duval explained in a release from the HSA.

Lizzette Yearwood, CEO of the Health Services Authority said the new ambulance would help the authority improve the overall operational and patient experience.

Meanwhile, Osbourne Bodden the health minister said Grand Cayman would now be better covered from the emergency medical stations in West Bay, George Town and North Side. 
“This new ambulance will allow one of the older vehicles to now serve as a spare during required maintenance or when additional resources are needed. This means that emergency responders can be on the scene within as short a time frame as possible, which is vital in an emergency situation,” he said. 

CNS has contacted the HSA for a price tag on the vehicle and is awaiting a response. For more information about the Cayman Islands Health Services Authority, visit

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  1. Anonymous says:

    A few years ago I had a heart attack…and had to wait over 40 minutes also.

    However I don't blame the EMS for this. Turns out they were on another call and had to return from George Town to North Side (where I live).

    I do however blame the current Government and past Governments as I cannot understand how any right thinking decision makers can justify that we only need 3 – 4 ambulances?? No one needs a degree to figure that 3 – 4 ambulances are NOT sufficient!

    Then compare that to what we spend on so much other unnecessary stuff (too much to mention – and it's all been mentioned many times before…if one is objective it's easy to see the waste) and it leaves many of us shaking our heads??

    We should have at least 6 ambulance vehicles (less than 5 years old) at all times!

    • Anonymous says:

      This comment is so amazingly accurate. The number of ambulances we have should be based on our population, not on the geographical size of the island. Look at how many fire trucks and fire stations we have, and yet we only have 3 ambulances and not one of them have their own station. These people are on shift 24/7, and I've seen the broom closets they call their offices. Why is the EMS always overlooked when the service is such an important part to our island-wide health care program. Not to mention now that this Health City place is another hospital on island WITHOUT an emergency room! We now have 3 hospitals on island and still only one emergency and triage room – we would really be ruined if there was a major incident here; lets hope for the best.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Working with so many immature people irritates me to no end. It’s probably the reason I have no friends at work.

    No. That is the reason.

    I run into the same thing day after day after day.

    “Did you hear that she is sleeping with him? And he is MARRIED!”

    I don’t care. And I don’t want to hear about it.

    “Did you hear what so-and-so said about so-and-so?”

    I don’t care. And I don’t want to hear about it.

    “Like, ohmygod! You have to hear what that guy said about you! It was so mean!”

    I don’t give a rat’s ass what anyone says about me.

    There’s this guy at work. He never talks to anyone. I never hear him on the radio; it’s always his partner. He is cordial enough, and will give a smile and a nod when we pass each other in the hospital. He waves when we pass each other on the road. But he never hangs out and talks. Some people think he is just mean, or introverted.

    I think he’s a genius.

    I ran into this guy one day, completely randomly, at a bar where I went to have a few beers. I waved and nodded, and he waved me over to sit with him, and we had enlightening conversation.

    “Man, I didn’t think you liked anyone at work.”

    “I don’t. They are just a bunch of whiny bitches always trying to complain about something or gossip about someone. I just want to go to work, do my job, go home, and get paid.”

    Just genius.

    I bought the next round.


  3. Anonymous says:

    Really great news that they got a new ambulance, it has been a long time coming as far as I'm concerned. All yousee in the news is stuff about the RCIPS and fire services getting all this great equipment and new vehicles, and never anything about the EMS and they're always out on the road and busy and dealing with emergency calls. The EMS is always overlooked, and I never understand why, especially considering that we would all like to believe we would be able to count on them one day, if we were ever in the position to have to call an ambulance for ourselves or a friend/family member.


    What the government should do is have an extra, relatively baseline stocked 'ambulance' that can deal with the non-emergent calls on the island. I know that a lot of the time the ambulance is tied up with dealing with patient transfers that are non-emergent, or even sometimes providing stand by back up at sporting events etc. Every other country have wheelchair van services, and non-emergent transport ambulances, we should too. Save the time and energy of having our emergent care trauma ambulances dealing with these trivial cases and have a more efficient and streamlined system.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Lets hope no one steals it.

    • Anonymous says:

      If it does get stolen, hey, at least it will have GPS and high visibility paint. Should only take the RCIPS a month or so to figure out where it went on island.

  5. Anonymous says:

    It cost us just over $10,000 in insurances per ambulance, $45,000 to get the equipment for them, the ambulance cost $120,000 or more our last one cost us just under $157,000 and they are only good for about 100,000 miles or 5 years. The biggest cost is the BLS and ALS people for them. One medic ambulance staffed 24 hours a day 7 days a week cost us just over $500,000 a year. I know you think that we are making good money but last year was our best year and after paying everything we made just over $318,000 per ambulance and we have three. If we didnt love what we do we wouldnt do it…. Things need to change… We need to be able to buy equipment thats not maked up 300%. We need 3 more ambulances with in the next year… Thats were all your money is going, ambulances,staff,overtime,locum,training locals and over priced equipment.

    • Anonymous says:

      The ambulance service isn't necessarily badly funded, or badly serviced – it is just being horribly managed.


      Which is a real shame since there are some amazing EMTs and paramedics on the island, great people with fantastic qualifications and the whole thing is just being run into the ground.

    • Anonymous says:

      We would be making a lot more money in the service if we didn't have to spend so much time, effort and resources dealing with people who will never pay their ambulance bill, or leave the government to pick it up after we've gone out for the 911 call.

    • Anonymous says:

      Can anyone translate this please?

  6. Anonymous says:

    This is great news – I'm all for anything that helps the EMS and other emergency services do their jobs better. Hopefully this ambulance will be of better use to them than the previous ones were; they were always in the news about breaking down and out of commission vehicles. Meanwhile, the firefighters who do a fraction of the emergency calls have wonderful stations and brand new fire trucks. So backwards.

  7. Anonymous says:

    I've had to phone an ambulance 3 times in Cayman.  Once it showed up.  The other two times we waited 30-40 minutes and then drove the patient to the hospital in a car. Doesn't matter if it's state of the art if it you can't rely on it turning up when you need it.

    • Anonymous says:

      That is what not paying income tax gets you.

    • Anonymous says:

      If the 2 closest units are out you would obviously have to wait. It takes a good 40 minutes to get from one side of the island to the other. 

    • anonymous says:

      Sounds like you didn't really need it otherwise you would have told us what happened to yourself/unwell relative…


      It's not a taxi service

    • Anonymous says:

      I work on the ambulance service – and if you ever had an idea as to the total garbage we have to deal with on a regular basis. People who have absolutely no idea when it is or isn't appropriate to call the ambulance and tie up emergency resources. People calling the ambulance for a ride into town, for a stubbed toe, or if their kid falls down and scrapes hisknee. Mean while, on the other side of the island someone is having a heart attack and I'm busy putting a band-aid on your kids playground graze. People with government health insurance and health care just take it all for granted. Yes, the EMS is there to respond to any emergency situation, but if a patient can go in the car to the hospital then go that way. Take them yourself – you would have gotten there much faster since like you said you had to wait 40 minutes for the ambulance (which I highly doubt, it would have to be under extreme circumstances).

    • Anonymous says:

      If they waited 40 minutes for an ambulance and survived, then you didn't need the ambulance in the first place. Instead of wasting people's time and money then you should have just taken the patient to the hospital yourself in the first place. Save you the 40 minutes of waiting time and save the EMS and the ambulance staff the trip. You're a perfect example of why there needs to be emergency education on island so people can learn when you should and shouldn't be calling 911!