On January 6, 1976, Ontario Fire Department launched a limited paramedic program conducted by six Ontario Firefighters who had graduated from the paramedic training program at Loma Linda University Medical Center.
The initial program was assisted by donations from service clubs. The paramedic program was eventually funded in March, 1976 when Ontario voters approved a 10-cent tax override that earmarked $166,000 for paramedics. This money was used to train four more paramedics and purchase equipment. The first year firefighter/paramedics responded to 2,137 medical calls.
Today the Ontario Fire Department has 58 firefighter/paramedics and 66 firefighter/EMTs. All eight fire engines are staffed with at least two firefighter/paramedics. In 2012 they responded to over 15,000 calls.
The EMS Bureau is overseen by a Medical Director, Chief Paramedic, Registered Nurse Administrator and a Fire Captain EMS Coordinator. The Ontario Fire Department provides monthly continuing education for all of our firefighter EMT/EMT-Ps; these classes are open to all medical personnel from the community. The EMS Bureau also provides CPR/AED and First Aid training to the community.