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Seconds Save Lives

Seconds Save Lives - A New Home for our Paramedics.

Seconds Save Lives is an $8.5 million capital campaign to address a critical need for a new station for Gunnison Valley Health Paramedics.

A larger, updated station in a better location on the Gunnison Valley Health Campus will:

  • Improve patient response time to 911 calls - saving lives
  • Improve patient safety, satisfaction rates and outcomes
  • Expand services, including training for the community
  • Support the safety and health of the emergency responders
  • Help our rural community recruit and retain health professionals

Most people don’t think of paramedics until they need to call 911. While hoping to never need to serve you, rest assured that a new station will help Gunnison Valley Health Paramedics to provide you, your family and our community with the best critical care medicine and rescue services available. For more information, download the Seconds Save Lives Proposal.

Donate Today! The next life they save could be yours.

Where will the new station be located?

The new station will be located at the corner of North Taylor Street and East Denver Avenue across from Gunnison Valley Hospital and will include:

  • Much needed sleeping quarters for the responders
  • Ample storage to accommodate the fleet of ambulances and emergency vehicles for easy access and a quick response
  • Administrative, education and training space as well as a kitchen and dining area

Why should I support a new Paramedics station?

Gunnison Valley Health Paramedics are not tax-funded like fire and police departments. They are funded by Gunnison Valley Health and insurance reimbursements. The annual operating budget of Gunnison Valley Health Paramedics is $1.6 million and does not include capital expenditures, such as a new building. All operating expenses are allocated to sustaining this essential community service. You never know when you may need them!

What can I do to support?

Donate today! Community support has never been so important for the patients served by Gunnison Valley Health Paramedics. Your donation today provides each individual who calls 911 with the best possible healthcare experience and outcome.

Did you know the Gunnison Valley Health Foundation is an IRS designated nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization? That means your gift and donation to support a new station for Gunnison Valley Health Paramedics are tax deductible in accordance with state and federal regulations.

In addition, individuals who pay Colorado State Income Tax are eligible for an Enterprise Zone tax credit on their Colorado return. Donations of $100 or more earn a 25% tax credit.

Donate Today! The next life they save could be yours.

Donate securely online or contact:
Jenny Birnie, Executive Director
Gunnison Valley Health Foundation, 711 N. Taylor Street, Gunnison CO 81230.
T: 970.642.8400
Click here to email Jenny Birnie

For more information, download the Seconds Save Lives Proposal.


Frequently Asked Questions.

What sets Gunnison Valley Health Paramedics apart from other emergency medical service departments?

  • Their service area is 4,400 square miles - the largest response zone in the State of Colorado. A typical Fire or Emergency Medical Services District is 100 - 400 sq. mi.
  • The 24/7 professional staff respond to calls for help related to acute injuries and illnesses, as well as backcountry rescues.
  • The team has individuals certified in swift water rescue, ice rescue, avalanche rescue, wildland firefighting, HAZMAT, emergency planning and rope rescue.
  • They are the only emergency medical service in the state cleared to transport and administer blood on ambulances; many personnel are flight paramedic certified; and the paramedics have specialized training to intubate and place patients on ventilators on scene before arriving at the hospital.
  • They closely partner with the Crested Butte Fire Protection District Paramedics serving Crested Butte and the north end of the Gunnison Valley on mutual aid emergencies, a regular occurrence during peak summer and winter seasons.
  • They provide transfers to Gunnison Valley Hospital, as well as critical care interfacility transports (IFTs) to hospitals in Montrose, Grand Junction and Denver.
  • They deliver some of the best service in the State of Colorado within the critical care scope of practice and were honored as Colorado’s EMS Ambulance Service of the Year and Physician Excellence in EMS in 2020.

How will the capital campaign be managed?

Jenny Birnie, Executive Director, Gunnison Valley Health Foundation, will work with the Gunnison Valley Health Foundation Board of Directors and Rob Santilli, CEO, Gunnison Valley Health, to manage and execute the capital campaign.

How are Gunnison Valley Health Paramedics funded and what is their annual budget?

Gunnison Valley Health Paramedics are not tax funded like fire and police departments. They are funded by Gunnison Valley Health and insurance reimbursements. The annual operating budget is $1.6 million, but this does not include capital expenditures such as a new building.

Why not remodel the existing building?

The existing building and location are inadequate for remodel or expansion. The aged existing station is a steel prefab modular shell originally built for housing fewer and smaller ambulances, far less equipment, and a small fraction of the current staff. Additionally, the current location is too small to allow for needed expansion and also has entrance and egress issues for the ambulances that negatively impact response time and pose safety issues for the emergency responders and the public.

What will be the positive impacts of the new building?

A larger, updated station on the Gunnison Valley Health campus will:

  • Improve patient response time to 911 calls -saving lives
  • Improve patient safety, satisfaction rates and outcomes
  • Expand services, including training for the community
  • Support the safety, health and well-being of the responders
  • Improve accessibility to and visibility of the Emergency Medical Services Department
  • Help our rural community to recruit and retain health professionals

Why a capital campaign?

Community members of the Gunnison Valley are the ones most likely to benefit from the improved services that will be made possible by a new building. As health care costs continue to rise, while reimbursement dollars shrink, health care providers must raise the money needed to operate and be able to serve their community over the long term. Also, the capital campaign will broaden the fundraising potential of the Gunnison Valley Health Foundation by cultivating long-term donor relationships in the community.

Who is being asked to support the campaign?

The focus of the campaign is to partner with Gunnison Valley full-time and part-time residents, while also pursuing funding opportunities with local government, private foundations and businesses.

I live in Crested Butte. Why would I support this campaign?

Supporting Gunnison Valley Health Paramedics benefits everyone in the Gunnison Valley - even if your home is in Crested Butte, Mt. Crested Butte, CB South or anywhere north of Round Mountain. Download this document to find out some of the reasons why you need to support this campaign.

Are donations tax-deductible?

Yes! The Gunnison Valley Health Foundation is an IRS designated nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization. Gifts and donations are tax deductible in accordance with state and federal regulations. In addition, individuals who pay Colorado State Income Tax are eligible for an Enterprise Zone tax credit on their Colorado return. Donations of $100 or more earn a 25% tax credit.

Why $8.5 million?

The goal of the capital campaign is currently set at $8.5 million. The goal is intended to cover the following projected expenses:

  • Architect fees for the new building
  • Contractor fees and building construction costs
  • Furniture, fixtures and equipment for the building
  • Campaign fundraising and marketing costs

What are the plans for donor recognition and naming opportunities?

There are multiple spaces in the new station available for naming rights. In addition, individuals and businesses will be publicly thanked and recognized on a donor thank you wall. Contact Jenny Birnie for more details at 970-642-8400 or email jbirnie@gvh-colorado.org.