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Paying their way


To the editor:

Regarding “Women of color most hurt by municipal pay gaps” (The Chief, April 3), if their next contract achieves pay and benefits parity within the FDNY, the diverse women and men of the city’s EMS workforce will see their huge wage gap of tens of thousands of dollars disappear.

And NYC budget negotiations between Mayor Eric Adams and the City Council are in progress, it's a good time to point out some relevant aspects of FDNY EMS work.  

Like NYC's other first responders, police officers and firefighters, the 4,000+ FDNY EMTs and paramedics save lives. Like NYPD officers, the women and men of the EMS are issued body armor

Unlike police officers or firefighters, the job duties of NYS certified FDNY EMS paramedics include administering intravenous medications and Paying their way erforming endotracheal intubations. Unlike the aid rendered by police officers and firefighters, for which no bill is sent, the city actually recovers some of EMS' medical treatment costs through patients' health insurers, Medicare, Medicaid and self-pay. 

EMS handled 1.8 million calls for emergency medical assistance last year. When a patient receives medical evaluation, emergency medical treatment and is transported to the hospital in an ambulance, NYC charges the patient $1,385.

According to the executive budget for Fiscal Year 2025, the combined FY 2024 costs for FDNY EMS salaries, supplies and materials is $427,146,516, while FDNY revenue is $655,739,686.   

That said, what other NYC first responder service offsets its costs to NYC with revenue in the hundreds of millions of dollars?

Helen Northmore


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