A proposal to approve a full-time medical unit in the South Jackson area will go to the Jackson County Board of Commissioners when it meets at 6 p.m. on Monday, May 19, at the courthouse in Jefferson.
EMS director Steve Nichols presented the proposal to the BOC Monday night. He said the new unit would be in service 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and would serve the South Jackson and Redstone districts. He asked that the new unit be in service as of July 1.
Nichols said the new unit would improve the response time for medical calls from the South Jackson area, as well as in Nicholson and Jefferson. The Nicholson and Jefferson units now respond to calls from South Jackson.
The response time for this area is now 12 to 17 minutes. It is expected that the response time will decrease to five to seven minutes if an additional unit is approved.
Nichols said 5,318 addresses, or approximately 13,200 people are served in the South Jackson district. In the past year, 213 calls have come from the South Jackson district.
Nichols also pointed out that the county has called on private medical companies or other counties 127 times in the past year because a county unit was not available. He said a delay like this can cause another 30 minute wait for a medical call.
“We’ve also had serious accidents that took all five of our units at one time,” Nichols said.
The South Jackson unit would be funded for the remainder of this year with $120,511 in EMS revenue fund and $97,289 from the county general fund.
Total funding for this additional unit on an annual basis would be $435,600.