Emergency Medical Services (EMS)

Our duty is to protect and preserve human life in the event of a trauma-related incident or serious medical condition. Emergency Medical Services (EMS) responds by assessing, treating, stabilizing, and transporting patients until definitive medical care is available at an appropriate facility. Each EMS unit is staffed by certified Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT)-Paramedics, who are trained and monitored by the staff of the University of Texas Health Science Center’s Emergency Medical Technology Department.

The Division’s Medical Intensive Care Ambulances are strategically located in fire stations throughout the city. These ambulances are supplied with state-of-the-art equipment, and coupled with our highly trained personnel, are an emergency room on wheels – capable of handling a variety of life saving procedures. Besides full-time ambulances, the division can activate Peak Period units during times of high call volume.

Initial training for EMT-Paramedics meets Texas Department of Health standards, and covers areas such as advanced cardiac life support, basic pediatric care, and pre-hospital trauma life support. Building on this initial 1,400 hours of training, EMT-Paramedics also receive 40 hours of continuing education each year. As members of the SAFD, EMS personnel must also take continuing education classes on structural firefighting approved by the Texas Commission on Fire Protection.


Other special programs through which the EMS Division provides high quality, immediate medical care include:

  • Medical Special Operations Unit - (2) teams of specially trained Paramedics that provide advanced medical life support in situations such as Weapons of Mass Destruction events, tactical/medical rescue for SWAT operations, hazardous materials exposure, and helicopter rescue operations.
  • Mobile Integrated Healthcare Pilot Program - The San Antonio Fire Department/Mobile Integrated Healthcare (SAFD/MIH) pilot program aspires to provide and improve the wellness and healthcare delivery to our citizens.
  • Paramedics on Bicycles Program - Responding to emergencies for large scale events, such as Fiesta Week, New Year’s Eve Celebration, Fourth of July Celebration, the Alamo Bowl, Final Four Games, and the Spurs Championship Celebration.
  • Taxi Voucher Program - Provides transportation for citizens in need of non-emergency care, making EMS units available for responding to critical care calls.

The EMS Division is under the command of an Assistant Fire Chief with a supervisory staff of 21 officers, a force of 371 Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT)-Paramedics, and civilian support personnel.

EMS Medical & Billing Reports

A city ordinance requires EMS services be billed directly to the patient. This ordinance helps to ensure the availability of special services, such as EMS, by making them self-sustaining. Learn more about EMS Billing Policies and Fees.

EMS Medical Reports and EMS Billing Reports are available upon request. Learn more about ordering Fire & EMS Reports, including contact information and needed forms.

EMS Quick Facts
  • 391 EMS Personnel
  • 33 Full-Time Ambulances
  • Up to 8 Peak Period Ambulances
  • Over 130,000 calls for service