Reid Health to provide ambulance service to western Wayne County
Reid Health’s decision to provide EMS/ambulance services to the western Wayne County is just another example of Reid’s historic, long-term support of emergency services in the region, hospital officials said this week.
“Reid Health has a long track record of supporting our area EMS services in numerous ways, including giving medical direction at no cost, providing important equipment, medications and more,” said Misti Foust-Cofield, Vice President/Chief Nursing Officer at Reid Health. She said that Reid Health decided to submit a bid when Reid was made aware that after the first bid deadline of Oct. 31, no one had proposed to cover Cambridge City and Hagerstown areas. “We considered this a crisis, so we offered bids to be sure those areas did not go without 911 service,” she said. At some point after Reid submitted bids, others chose to also submit them, she said.
“We wanted to be sure everyone in the western Wayne County area had continuity of access to critically important emergency transportation,” she said. “We look forward to working with other emergency transportation providers to ensure immediate access to our patients in this area.”
Emily Kraft, M.D., emergency physician, will serve as Medical Director for Reid Health EMS. “I look forward to working with Reid Health EMS in its new venture to serve the people of this community. I am excited to continue to build partnerships and provide new educational and training opportunities for the many first responders and EMS providers in the region.”
Reid Health supports regional EMS services in numerous ways, including:
- Providing cardiac monitors valued at $36,000 each that are leased for $1 a year to use for emergency patients, with 23 currently deployed in our service area. The monitors detect abnormal heart rhythms, oxygen saturation and allow the user to monitor blood pressure and other heart functions. Reid Health also provides modems for the monitors to transmit real-time patient information to Reid Health Emergency Services, which allows early activation of treatment teams at the hospital to provide immediate treatment for patients having a heart attack upon arrival at Reid.
- Supplying to several Indiana and Ohio ambulance services the on-board medications needed for emergency runs. The approximate $34,000 annual cost is funded through Reid Health Community Benefit at no charge to the EMS companies.
- Providing Medical Director services at no charge to area ambulance service providers. All ambulance services are required to be affiliated with a supervising hospital and have a Medical Director.
- And long before the decision to provide the western Wayne County service, Reid had begun expanding the EMS area off of its Emergency Department to provide crews a larger space to use when at the hospital. The area will be stocked with refreshments and provide a more comfortable space for the crews.
Ryan Williams, EMS Coordinator for Reid Health Emergency Services, said the ambulance service will also be an asset in helping ensure quick availability of emergency transportation in situations such as urgent transfers of patients or in situations in which multiple people are injured. “We anticipate joining other service providers in the area on the same mission – offering the best and fastest emergency care that we can when it is needed.”
The Reid Health service will launch Jan. 1 with three vehicles, with at least one of them stationed in the Cambridge City area.
Videos of County Commission meetings where bids were discussed, and of a local radio program are below, offering detailed information on how the service came about.