State Senator Carolyn Comitta Honored by Chester County EMS Council

ComittaImage via Pennsylvania Senate Democrats

WEST CHESTER, PA — In recognition of her work on behalf of the emergency services community, state Senator Carolyn Comitta was recently honored by the Chester County EMS Council with the organization’s Robert Thompson Memorial Award.

Comitta was presented with the award, named in memory of the late state Senator Robert Thompson, at the EMS Council’s annual banquet.

“As Mayor of West Chester Borough, I had the opportunity to interact with our emergency services providers and see them act with courage, skill, and selflessness to assist others when they needed help the most,” she said. “I am honored to receive this recognition and will continue to stand with and support our EMS providers and first responders.”

According to the EMS Council, “the award recognizes a public elected official who has made significant contributions to the planning, development, implementation, or evaluation of EMS systems within their local community or the Commonwealth as a whole.”

Comitta received the award for her work in securing vital funding for ambulance and emergency first response agencies following the termination of advanced life support (ALS) services in western Chester County.

Earlier this year, she secured $400,000 in total state funding for the eight ambulance and emergency services providers impacted by the closure of Tower Direct (Medic 93) and Brandywine Hospital. The companies each received $50,000 in grant funding to upgrade equipment and vehicles so they can better the needs of the communities they serve.

Tower Health abruptly closed Brandywine Hospital and Jennersville Hospital in early 2022 and its Advanced Life Support ambulances (Medic 93) stopped operating in the area served by the hospitals in September.

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Since then:

  • The Jennersville location was acquired by ChristianaCare and will reopen as the ChristianaCare West Grove campus. Comitta and other lawmakers secured $2.5 million in state and federal funding for its renovation and the development of outpatient services.
  • Comitta and other lawmakers secured $2.1 million in federal grant funding for Paoli Hospital and $2.1 million in state grant funding for Chester County Hospital to support expansion projects to help both hospitals manage the resultant influx of patients.

In addition, last year Comitta secured $50,000 in state funding for Southern Chester County Emergency Medical Services/Medic 94 to support the purchase of new equipment for its licensed paramedic units.

Comitta also continues to engage stakeholders and community partners in discussions on finding a new owner/operator for Brandywine Hospital.

A West Chester native, Thompson served as state Senator for the 19th District, the seat currently held by Comitta, from 1995 until his passing in 2006.

Also recognized by the EMS Council at the banquet were:

  • Andrew Schreiber with the Citizens Award.
  • Kayla Wettlaufer as Telecommunicator of the Year.
  • Andrew Tucker as EMS Educator of the Year.
  • Melody Kachel as Basic Life Support Provider of the Year.
  • Rebecca Whitpan as Advanced Life Support Provider of the Year.
  • West Grove Fire Company with the Distinguished Service Award.
  • Andrew Chambers with the Distinguished Provider Award.
  • John Sly with the Nicholas H.S. Campbell/Meritorious Leadership Award.
  • Frank Sullivan with the Margaret Hoover Brigham Award.

The Chester County EMS Council, Inc. is a non-profit organization established under Commonwealth of Pennsylvania legislation to act as a local regulatory body that assists the Department of Health with local EMS organizations throughout the EMS region.

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To learn more about the Chester County EMS Council, visit chescoems.org.

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