For 35 years, Arkansas Methodist Medical Center has served Greene County. Right now, they are the only ambulance provider on 911 rotation in that area and it appears it will stay that way.
Two weeks ago, Medic One President Ryan Kibler went before the Paragould City Council. There, he requested to be put on rotation with AMMC to better serve a fast-growing Greene County.
Monday night, AMMC's President and CEO Barry Davis reacted to the possibility of another ambulance service on emergency rotation.
"Even though Paragould is growing, the need is just not there," Davis said. "There may be a time in the future where we may need to expand further or a second service may be warranted. But we just don't feel like that time is now."
Davis said they provide 16.6 transports per day. Davis explained that four are regular transfers. The remaining 12.6 calls are emergency runs.
"Over the past five years, we've seen our average number of runs, transports, increase by one," Davis said. Davis told the council those numbers didn't warrant a second ambulance provider.
Medic One President Ryan Kibler spoke to the council after Davis, stating that Medic One would only benefit the Paragould area.
"We also have other communities where we have competitive services in our system and to be truthful with you, competition increases care," Kibler said.
In the end, the council voted against putting Medic One on 911 rotation. Two councilmen abstained from voting due to conflicts of interest.
Davis also encouraged the council members to consider looking into an ordinance that would define who or how many ambulance services can serve Paragould.
According to Mayor Gaskill, this is only the second time since he's been mayor that an ambulance service has requested to be on 911 rotation with AMMC. The last time it happened was in the late '90s.
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