drew aversa

Drew Aversa, MBA

What happens if UBER starts providing EMS care and how would it affect EMS in the midst of major incidents or disaster? That is the topic of tonight’s episode of the Disaster Podcast. Hosts Jamie Davis, the Podmedic and Sam Bradley are joined by Dr. Joe Holley from Paragon Medical Education Group to talk with our special guest on this interesting and unusual topic.

Drew Aversa is a former first responder who went into the private sector after a career-ending injury. He now works as a consultant and advisor to companies interested in applying his expertise to their leadership and management principles. His website is found at DrewAversa.com.

Drew proposes that companies like UBER and LYFT could use their independent contractor model to get into other industries like provision of medical services in a way to reduce and control skyrocketing medical costs. What does this mean for the first responders who might work for such a company? The battle is on in some states over UBER’s interpretation of the definitions of employee and independent contractor.

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Again, a special thank-you to Paragon Medical Education Group for their continued support of this podcast as our partners in this endeavor to bring disaster medicine to you. Check out their page and educational resources that can help your system be more prepared for what happens in your area.

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2 Responses to The UBER Business Model and Disaster Response

  1. Jason B says:

    When I was working as a bike messenger my boss knew I was an EMT and we talked long and hard about an uber style model for response during traffic jams and at events.

    My final conclusion was that a freelance medic is a bad idea. In low acuity cases it works but with something more serious it adds a responder who isn’t activating definitive care and transport at least until they’ve done their assessment this delaying care when it is most needed.

    It also runs the risk of self dispatching and scene jumping like we eliminated years ago.

    Uber also doesn’t provide benefits or guaranteed work for any driver.

    Delivering a nurse with a vaccine or offering uber house calls is one thing but it’s problematic for emergencies.

    More people should be transporting themselves anyway and over dispatching resources is an obvious point for improvement.

    All that noted I don’t want a lax regulated freelancer responding to my call. They can’t even properly manage background checks for drivers as it is.

    I also don’t want to face a situation that’s been made worse by a poorly regulated freelance responder. Again Uber isn’t doing a great job of background checking drivers. It doesn’t bode well for the level oversight needed for EMS.

  2. jamie says:

    Jason, thanks for the comments. I really appreciate it. You hit the nail on the head with self-dispatch issues. Please keep in touch and let us know what you want to here more of on the show.

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