Council Connect Articles

Alameda County Addresses Ambulance Patient Offload Delays


• Alameda County hospital and emergency department leaders
• Alameda County emergency medical services (EMS) representatives
• Falck Ambulance
• Various fire agencies
• Hospital Council


With Alameda County emergency department volumes returning to and sometimes exceeding pre-pandemic levels, there is renewed attention to ambulance patient offload delays. Recently, EMS transport providers cited these delays as the reason they were unable to meet their response times in the field and then elevated their concerns to the Board of Supervisors. Hospital Council worked with Alameda County EMS to avoid bringing the issue to the county supervisors and then supported EMS in convening stakeholders for a dialogue and to consider solutions. A first meeting was held on Oct. 1. Overall, it was a positive discussion focused on improving communication and collaboration, with all agreeing to the principle of providing the best possible care to patients.

Takeaway/Next Steps

The group will continue to meet regularly to monitor ambulance patient offload times, address mutual challenges, and identify new solutions and best practices. Alameda County EMS will meet with hospitals individually to better understand the situation at each facility. Hospitals agreed to outline in writing the steps they have already taken or plan to take to reduce offload times. 


RVP Rebecca Rozen at