02/01/21 - The Pike County Board of Commissioners has reached an agreement with Medcare to provide EMS service in Pike County. This decision was taken to improve EMS service to all Pike Countians. Some concerns have been voiced by citizens and we wish to summarize and update recent developments regarding EMS.
All current Pike EMS employees have an opportunity to continue employment with Medcare. To date, over a dozen former Pike EMS employees have secured employment with Medcare with employment offers having been extended to several candidates who have not yet responded. A notable change for transitioning employees is the higher pay scale that exists at Medcare. Additionally, all former Pike EMS employees will receive a severance payment equal to two full weeks of salary as approved by the Board of Commissioners.
Pike EMS equipment will be addressed using applicable guidelines for the disposition of government assets whether equipment or supplies. The Board is currently reviewing needs and options within the County to ensure that the highest best use of existing assets is realized.
The Pike EMS Mound Rd. station will continue to function as an EMS station but will be leased by Medcare, lease terms are being negotiated.
The Board has addressed issues such as Fire Department call coverage, Fair coverage and other EMS support services all of which will be provided by Medcare at no cost.
The Board has ensured that Medcare and the Pike County Sheriff’s Department have met and discussed service and communication concerns, specifically Dispatch and radio communications as well as EMS support services.
Medcare will pursue payment for EMS services just has Pike EMS has. The primary difference will be regarding collections. Medcare will attempt to collect payment but they will not pursue property liens or other forms of payment beyond a 3rd party collection service, they will also work with anyone who tries to make any form of payment. In the past, Pike EMS would write off some unpaid fees every year.
In summary, Pike County has just taken a substantial step forward in improving EMS service for our 28,000 residents. More EMS vehicles, more EMS staff, better response times and more all-around resources are all part of this decision.
A significant portion of EMS tax levy dollars will not be collected beginning the second half of 2021 saving taxpayers more than one half million dollars.
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