Begin Main Content Area

Act 17 BLS Ambulance Staffing Exceptions

Act 17 of 2020 amended the EMS System Act to permit the Department of Health to grant exceptions to the ambulance staffing standard for Basic Life Support (BLS) ambulances. Pursuant to the Act, exceptions will be granted only in cases where there are extraordinary reasons and in the best interest of the EMS system and patient care. 

For EMS agencies, your regional EMS council is a valuable resource in being able to provide technical assistance related to emergency medical services. They can be of great assistance in the creation of corrective action plans and/or county or broader response plans. 

The Bureau of EMS is also available to answer questions and provide support. Email inquires regarding the Act 17 exception program can be emailed to

Program Overview and General Criteria


County or Broader Response Plan Examples

A portion of the criteria for review include participation in a county or broader response plan as outlined in Act 37 of 2009.  As a resource, the Bureau of EMS is providing redacted examples of different response plans.  These examples will provide aid to any areas that may look to create their own plan.