Osage – Providing the residents of Mitchell County with a seamless emergency medical service is the top priority of Mitchell County Regional Health Center’s EMS Department.
Historically, MCRHC has been able to reliably staff a paramedic on duty Monday through Friday during the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. In August of 2011, however, MCRHC increased this coverage of its Emergency Medical Services Department with the hiring of two full-time paramedics with alternating schedules in order to better meet the emergency medical needs of Mitchell County residents.
In addition to expanding paramedic hours, MCRHC recently upgraded its EMS radio system resulting in better communication with other Mitchell County emergency service organizations.
According to Jynae Clapper, Chief Nursing Officer at Mitchell County Regional Health Center, thanks to the cooperation of the Mitchell County Sheriff’s Department and local Fire Departments, the recent upgrades have resulted in a more seamless response and more reliable public emergency service.
“We continually look for improvements in both equipment and processes keeping our focus on the health and safety of the people who live in our communities,” Clapper said.
One improvement Clapper reported was the purchase of an additional vehicle which the two full-time paramedics can house at their homes, stocked with necessary life-saving equipment.
Clapper said, “A paramedic can arrive on the scene first and faster. The remainder of the crew will arrive in an ambulance shortly thereafter. This process will improve how quickly a patient receives vital care while cutting precious minutes off of response times.”
Even though EMS staff work much like local volunteer firemen in the fact that staff are put on call and often times travel from their homes to answer emergency calls, MCRHC EMS department meets or exceeds the state benchmarks for response time averages for a rural EMS services.
Additional improvements to the MCRHC EMS department revolve around continuing education and training.
In fact, Clapper reported that MCRHC is sponsoring an auto extrication class for MCRHC staff and is also partnering with local emergency services, fire departments and first responders, to educate all of our emergency service providers in Mitchell County in auto extrication.
The auto extrication class is taught and certified through Riverland Community College.
“Our vision is that we will offer more and more continuing education for local responders, not only for MCRHC employees, but for all emergency service organizations across Mitchell County,” Clapper said, adding, “to create a more collaborative effort since we all have the same goal in mind, which is to ensure public safety and the health our communities.”