St. Louis Fire Chief Struggles to Replace Paramedics

ST. LOUIS (KSDK) – The St. Louis Fire Chief said paramedics are quitting at such a high rate, he can’t replace them quickly enough. The department should have 55 paramedics. Right now they have 35, Chief Dennis Jenkerson said. 

Between two and four paramedics are quitting each month, and he said there’s no one in line to replace them. “We have nobody left to interview. There’s nobody even left on the list,” he said.

He blames burnout. “They see too many traumas,” he said, often on more than a dozen calls a day. The car crashes, the accidents and the violence.

“The shootings. The traumatic injuries to young and small children. It has an effect,” he said. The paramedics who leave often go to other counties where they have fewer calls and fewer traumas, he said. MORE

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