HCFR: Record number of paramedic grads

Hall County Fire Rescue (HCFR) recently recognized a record number of 46 new paramedic graduates, meeting a critical need for the department.

“It’s amazing to see so many men and women step up to serve the citizens of Hall County – they are the ones who truly make a sacrifice,” Hall County Board of Commissioners Chairman Richard Higgins said. “As a Board, our job is to ensure our first responders are equipped with the best training and equipment possible, but their job is to respond and care for the people in our community.”

The 46 paramedics graduated simultaneously from two separate programs facilitated by Lanie Tech and Faithful Guardian Training Center.

“As a department, we are eternally grateful for the sacrifices that these 46 men and women, along with their families, have made over the course of their training. It not only shows their dedication to Hall County Fire Rescue but also to providing next-level care to our community,” Hall County Fire Rescue Public Information Officer Kimberlie Ledsinger said. 

According to a study published by the American Ambulance Association, an advocacy group for emergency medical responders, full-time paramedic turnover reached 27% in 2022, with open staff positions averaging 30% nationwide.

“There has been a nationwide paramedic shortage for several years now, and Hall County has been no exception to that shortage,” Ledsinger said. “Graduating these 46 paramedics is not only historic, but it is crucial to our department. Medical calls won’t stop just because we are short-staffed; in fact, medical calls are the majority of what we receive.”

In addition to the 46 new graduates, 20 more HCFR employees have enrolled in paramedic training and are on track to graduate in spring 2025. Combined, both classes will place 66 new paramedics on shift with Hall County Fire Rescue.

(Pictured: Some of the 46 recent graduates. Photo courtesy Hall County Government.)