July 23, 2020
Nominated by several agencies across the tri-county area, St. Peter’s Health Ambulance Manager David Webster has been named the Montana EMS Career Provider of the Year.
Webster’s work in Emergency Medical Services started long before his career at St. Peter’s. In fact, it started when he was in high school when he worked for Beaverhead County Search and Rescue, before joining the Dillon Volunteer Fire Department and Beaverhead EMS. After completing his degree in paramedic studies at the University of Iowa, Webster returned to Dillon to provide care through Beaverhead Emergency Medical Services.
In 2001, he joined St. Peter’s Health as a paramedic, which at the time had just two duty crews per day. In 2014, he was promoted to Ambulance Manager and since built the program into what it is today.
“Dave is an extraordinary leader who has lead our Ambulance department to exceptional levels."
~Sandy Haschle, PhD, MSN, MA, RN, NE-BC Procedural Senior Nursing Director
"Dave has risen through the ranks and created what I think is the most high quality group of EMTs and Paramedics that St. Peter’s Health has ever had," said Sandy Haschle, PhD, MSN, MA, RN, NE-BC Procedural Senior Nursing Director. "Dave has reduced our response times to all of our response areas by strategically putting ambulances where they are needed most."
"He is very active with our rural fire departments in Helena and across the state and will go to any length to educate responders on high quality CPR. He also works with rural Fire Chiefs to provide EMS education whenever needed. Dave has been instrumental in working with our SPH Population Health team and DPHHS to develop a pilot Community Paramedic program in Helena. Through this program we have been able to care for patients where they need the most help no matter where that location happens to be.”
Webster’s philosophy has always been laser focused on improvement through training and serving his community well.
Webster’s colleagues specifically noted in his nomination his commitment to training staff in high performance cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and other important certifications, as well as growing his team to better accommodate community need.
Thanks to Webster, all St. Peter’s paramedics are required to obtain a Montana Critical Care Transport Endorsement within six months of hire. Paramedics and EMTs are also expected to demonstrate 1-on-1 competency in several dozen specific skills each year, such as needle chest decompression, cardiac pacing, operating a transport ventilator and chest tube maintenance.
In January of 2020, almost 100 people from Avon to Townsend and from Great Falls to Boulder attended a free EMT refresher course led by Dave’s team at St. Pete’s.
Webster's work to nearly double the size of his team since 2017 has also led to a large reduction in stacked calls.
Webster’s team responds to over 6,500 calls per year. To better meet community need, the team now schedules six and sometimes seven 12-hour duty crews per day, including an ambulance posted to the north side of Helena 24/7/365 days a year and an ambulance posted at the East Valley fire station most days of the week.
Webster’s nomination was submitted by several individuals from agencies and organizations from across the tri-county area including:
- Lewis & Clark County Sherriff’s Department
- Wolf Creek / Craig Fire Service Department
- members of the St. Peter’s Health Ambulance team
- East Valley Fire Department
- York Volunteer Fire Department
- Helena Fire Department.