EMS Service Provider Licensing
Licensure of EMS Providers FAQ
ALS & BLS
1. Who needs a BLS or ALS ambulance service license?
Pursuant to rules 401.25, 64J-1.002, 64J-1.003, Florida Administrative Code, every person, firm, corporation, association or governmental entity owning or acting as an agent for the owner of any business or service, which furnishes, operates, conducts, maintains, advertises, engages in, proposes to engage in or professes to engage in the business or service of providing pre-hospital or interfacility advanced life support services or basic life support transportation service, must be licensed as a basic or advanced life support ambulance service, before offering such service to the public.
2. What are the requirements for a BLS or ALS ambulance service license?
The requirements are listed on the application for BLS or ALS ambulance licensure. The following is a partial list of the major requirements: Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity (COPCN) from the county commission in the county you wish to operate your service, a medical director (licensed Florida physician) with a Department of Justice-Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) registration (DEA registration is required for ALS only), vehicle liability insurance, trauma transport protocols and an approved radio communication system. Approval of a radio communication system is completed by Department of Management Services (DMS)-Information Technology Program. Contact DMS for more information on EMS radio communication systems.
3. What is the required staffing for BLS and ALS vehicles and air ambulances?
Pursuant to section 401.25(7)(a), Florida Statutes, BLS vehicles are required to have, at a minimum, an emergency medical technician (EMT) attending the patient and a driver meeting the requirements in section 401.281, Florida Statutes.
Pursuant to section 401.25(7)(b), Florida Statutes, ALS vehicles are required to have, at a minimum, a paramedic attending the patient and an EMT.
Pursuant to section 401.252, Florida Statutes, Inter-facility ambulance staffing is based on the patient's condition as determined by the medical director.
Aircraft-prehospital air ambulances are required to have, at a minimum, one paramedic.
1. Who needs an air ambulance service license?
Pursuant to section 401.281, Florida Statutes, and rule 64J-1.005, Florida Administrative Code, every person, firm, corporation, association or governmental entity owning or acting as an agent for the owner of any business or service, which furnishes, operates, conducts, maintains, advertises, engages in, proposes to engage in or professes to engage in the business or service of transporting by air ambulance, must be licensed as an air ambulance service, before offering such service to the public.
2. What are the requirements for an air ambulance service license?
The requirements are listed on the application for AIR ambulance licensure. The following is a partial list of the major requirement: Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity (COPCN) from the county commission in the county you wish to operate your prehospital service, a medical director (licensed Florida physician) with a Department of Justice-Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) registration (prehospital only), aircraft vehicle liability insurance, trauma transport protocols and an approved radio communication system. Approval of a radio communication system is completed by DMS-Division of Telecommunication. Contact DMS for more information on EMS radio communication systems.
Driver and Personnel Requirements
1. What are the requirements for an ambulance driver?
An ambulance driver must meet the following requirements:
- is at least 18 years of age;
- certifies under oath that he or she is not addicted to alcohol or any controlled substance, and is free from any physical or mental defect or disease that might impair their ability to drive an ambulance;
- upon initial designation as a driver, has not within the past three years, been convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol or controlled substance and has not had a driver's license suspended under the point system provided for in Chapter 322, Florida Statutes;
- successfully completed a 16 hour course of instruction on driving an authorized emergency vehicle, which includes, at a minimum, classroom and behind the wheel training. Rule 64J-1.013, Florida Administrative Code for details on the 16 hour course content;
- possess a valid American Red Cross or National Safety Council first aid course or its equivalent; and
- possess a valid American Red Cross or American Heart Association cardiopulmonary resuscitation card.
What are the law and rules governing Emergency Medical Services?
What are the fees for ambulance service licensure?
Pursuant to Section 401.34, Florida Statutes, the fees are $660.00 for a BLS license and $1,375.00 for an ALS and Air license, plus $25.00 for each vehicle or aircraft you permit under your license. The license and vehicle permits are issued for two years.
If I want to change the status of my license from BLS to ALS during my two-year cycle will you pro-rate the fees?
NO, the fees will not be pro-rated. You would be considered a new service, charged the full fee, and the license will be good for two years from the date of issue of your ALS license.
1. Is an inspection from your department required as part of the licensure application process?
NO, an inspection of your vehicles and service records and facilities is not required prior to licensure. However, your service will receive an inspection within 90 days of your licensure issuance date.
1. What happens if my service decides to move?
A license is valid only for the service location for which it was originally issued. You must submit another application, and the fee is $30.00.
Reference section 401.321, Florida Statutes
It is the responsibility of the licensed provider to keep current the records on file in the EMS Section. During the two-year licensure period, documentation may expire (such as the medical director's contract, medical director's physician license, DEA registration, vehicle/aircraft liability insurance, and COPCN). The provider should automatically submit current information in a timely fashion.
Other Transport Service - No Jurisdiction
1. I want to operate a wheelchair and stretcher transport service. Does your office license these services also?
NO, we do not license non-ambulatory passenger taxi services, as they do not provide medical transport. A service of this type is providing transport to non-ambulatory passengers not in need or likely to need medical attention. If a service of this type provides transport to a passenger that is in need of or likely to need medical attention they are in violation of Chapter 401, Florida Statutes and must be licensed as an ambulance service. Some Florida counties do regulate wheelchair and stretcher services. Call the county commission office of the county in which you desire to operate this type of service for information.
Vehicle Permits FAQ
1. Do I need to have vehicle or aircraft permitted before operating them?
Yes, vehicles and aircraft must be permitted under your service license before operating them.
2. What are the levels of vehicle permitting?
Vehicles are permitted either at the BLS or ALS level. Once permitted at that level, the vehicle must be operated at all times at that level with the required staffing and equipment.
Reference section 401.26, Florida Statutes.
3. I have a permitted vehicle/aircraft that requires maintenance. Can I use an unpermitted vehicle/aircraft in its place?
Yes, when it is necessary for a permitted vehicle/aircraft to be out of service for routine maintenance or repairs, a substitute vehicle/aircraft meeting the same transport capabilities and equipment specifications as the out of service vehicle/aircraft may be used for a period of time not to exceed 30 days. An unpermitted vehicle/aircraft cannot be placed into service, nor can a BLS vehicle be used at the ALS level unless it is replacing a vehicle that has been temporarily taken out of service for maintenance. When such a substitution is made, the following information shall be maintained by the licensee and shall be accessible to the department:
- identification of permitted vehicle/aircraft taken out of service;
- identification of substitute vehicle/aircraft; and,
- the date on which the substitute vehicle/aircraft was placed into service, the date on which it was removed from service and the date the permitted vehicle/aircraft was returned to service.
4. If I permit a vehicle/aircraft in the middle of my two-year licensure cycle, how long is the permit good for?
The permit WILL expire at the same time your license does.
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