Hatzalah's mission is to save lives, and to prevent, reduce, and treat injuries and illness. Hatzalah provides first-aid and ambulance service in the Philadelphia area. Hatzalah also distributes safety information throughout Philadelphia, helping people stay safe and prepared.
We also provide many other important services such as searches for missing people, and have plans to provide community safety and first aid training programs.
Hatzalah is the largest volunteer Emergency Medical Services and ambulance provider in the United States, with numerous branches serving communities throughout the United States and the world.
Medical Emergencies Only:
Hatzalah was started in Brooklyn, New York in the late 1960s to address a need in the Jewish community for an ambulance service that understood its cultural and religious needs and to improve EMS response time. The idea quickly spread and today Hatzolah is the largest volunteer ambulance service in the United States, with over 80 ambulances and almost 2,000 volunteer EMTs in the United States, as well as dozens of branches throughout the world.
Hatzalah helps improve the response time throughout its coverage areas, and even outside of its areas, by adding more EMTs and ambulances to the system, thereby freeing up other ambulances to respond more quickly to other calls.
Hatzalah's interaction and cooperation with other EMS, Police, Fire, Paramedic, and other agencies leads to better understanding and relationships with the Jewish communities. When an emergency occurs, having a responder who is knowledgeable and understanding of the Jewish laws, languages, and cultural nuances, lends a great deal of comfort to both the patient and family, and can also diffuse potentially uncomfortable scenarios.
Hatzalah's volunteers are certified EMT's (Emergency Medical Technicians), nurses, PAs, or physicians and are very well trained and equipped. Hatzalah's communities place a great importance on saving lives, and therefore donate generously, allowing Hatzalah to purchase advanced and high-tech equipment, to help the volunteers save lives.
The secret to Hatzalah's success is that Hatzalah's volunteers work, daven (pray), study, shop, sleep and go about their ordinary lives while being constantly on-call. They carry their emergency radios 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. When a call goes out over the emergency radio, the closest volunteers immediately rush to the scene with the lifesaving equipment they keep in their cars, while other volunteers rush to bring an ambulance. Often, in severe medical emergencies the first few minutes are the most crucial. Since the volunteers are not tied to a garage or one location, there are almost always volunteers who happen to be within a few blocks of the call. By being near the call, Hatzalah's volunteers have saved thousands of lives over the years.
Hatzalah's volunteers are members of the communities they serve. As such they are familiar with the neighborhoods, the stores, the shuls and schools. They are dedicated to and familiar with the unique needs and sensitivities of the Jewish communities.
Although supported and staffed by the Jewish community, Hatzalah provides care equally to all who are in need, regardless of religion, race, or any other factors. At a call with multiple patients, priority is always given to the more seriously injured patients, in accordance with the triage system.
Hatzalah is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.