provide fire protection, emergency medical services, technical rescue, public education
and hazardous materials response. There are four new stations identified to be built
within the next five years and 105 additional career personnel are projected to be in the
five-year staffing plan (Prince William County Office of Executive Management, 2002).
As the population increases, the service demand will increase. Both an increased
incident call volume and increased number of Fire Department personnel will increase
the amount of radio transmissions. It is mission-critical that the future providers of
emergency services have a reliable radio system that will support them in carrying out
their mission of providing the highest level of service to the citizens in the most efficient
and safest way possible.
This applied research project was performed to contribute to the existing body of
knowledge within the fire and rescue profession, to research a major problem currently
under review by the author’s department, and to fulfill the requirements of the National
Fire Academy’s Executive Fire Officer Program. The topic of this research relates to the
Advanced Leadership Issues in Emergency Medical Services in that contemporary EMS
systems and their personnel rely as heavily on their communications systems as they do
any other resource available to them. Effective communication networks provide: access
to the EMS system, dispatch of EMS and other public safety agencies, coordination
among EMS and other public safety agencies, access to medical direction,
communications to and between emergency health care facilities, communications
between EMS and other health care providers, and outlets for disseminating information
to the public (Delbridge & Paris, 1994, p. 245-261).