POMEROY — “This gives us yet more tools in our belt to serve our community,” declared Meigs County Emergency Medical Services Director Robbie Jacks.
Holding the two new Lifepak 15’s, EMS members were enthusiastic.
The monitor and defibrillator systems were the end result of MCEMS aggressively pursuing grant money from available federal sources. The Federal Emergency Management Agency Assistance to Firefighters grant program awarded $53,613 to the Meigs agency earlier in the month.
“I’m very proud of the staff to make this happen. That dollar figure — it’s big for the county,” Jacks said as he presented the equipment. “I very much appreciate the team effort between my staff and Betsy.”
The Meigs County Commissioners and Grant Administrator Betsy Entsminger were on hand to mark the event.
“This grant was lovely to work on because instead of just numbers and contracts, I get to see equipment show up as the end result,” Entsminger said.
The group reviewed the Lifepaks in front of the newest vehicle in the EMS motor pool, an ambulance purchased earlier in 2016.
“Part of that purchase was a grant as well, and through the efforts we did not need a loan to make it happen,” said Jacks as he overviewed the procurement.
Adding another ambulance gives the emergency response fleet significant flexibility.
“We now have three full-time in operation and one in reserve, plus auxiliaries in Rutland, Tuppers Plains and Reedville if there’s trouble mechanically,” Jacks said.
But the advanced technology carried by the EMS crews — and carrying them — has a price tag.
“A rural county, or any area facing economic difficulties, will face challenges making sure their crews have what they need to properly serve the people, ” Jacks said. “That’s why the efforts of the staff and the grant administrator are so critical. I want to be conservative in spending but without compromising the level of care. This is your county government working to save taxpayer money.”
He added, “In regards to grants, both state and federal, we want to be aggressive finding the money that lets us deliver high quality services to Meigs residents.”