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While Marion County Ambulance District crews continue to participate at vaccination clinics, the district is looking for reimbursement for their time and manpower.
The situation was discussed during the recent Marion County Ambulance District Board meeting, at which the board also discussed a new protocol and policy app, a delayed response to a call and the Cardinal Glennon situation.
According to Chief John Nemes, crews are continuing to participate at area vaccination clinics, including Ralls County Health Department’s at Mark Twain Lake on March 24 and again with the second dose on April 14.
Nemes advised the board that the initial paperwork and request for reimbursement to the Missouri Department of Public Safety for reimbursement of labor funds used to assist on these vaccination events was submitted and has been approved.
“Marion County is eligible for the reimbursement of labor expenses,” said Nemes, noting he attended the online webinar sponsored by the state to discuss the next steps forward in receiving it.
He will keep the board updated on that information.
Nemes also noted Missouri Medicaid has extended the ground emergency medical transportation (GEMT) cost report due date again.
The revised due date for the cost report period of July 1, 2019 and June 30, 2020 is now April 30.
“So funding the district is scheduled to receive will likely be delayed,” Nemes said.
In his report, Nemes said the district is going to trail a new protocol and policy app, called MedicHero.
“We want to see how it stacks up against the current provider, Paramedic Protocol Providers,” he explained. “One issue that’s always needed improvement is having the ability to directly change app content and those changes going out immediately to the end user.”
Currently, Nemes said the district submits changes and that data is entered by the company. The new provider claims to be able to provide that option, which will give the district more control over the app and its content.
“If this app seems to be better when they trial it, I’ll ask for a quote and submit it to the board for consideration,” Nemes said.
In other business, Nemes said he had received a call about crews taking too long to respond to a call.
“We looked into it and determined the crew responded appropriately, but they were delayed due to area road construction altering the response route,” he said.
To hopefully prevent that from happening again in the future, Nemes said the district is looking at possible scenarios and pre-planning for alternate options.
Discussion is continuing with SSM Cardinal Glennon, Nemes said, noting they want to continue the contract with Marion County Ambulance District as it is, but are still waiting on their new transport units.
Nemes also noted Cardinal Glennon has been short-staffed and had to shut down the Hannibal truck five or six times due to no crew available.
“When this happens, the district utilizes its employees at Base 1 to assist with cleaning, inventory, transfers (if needed) and delivery of supplies,” he said.
The board also:
• learned there has been no additional communication with U.S. Cellular regarding the site at Base 1, but Nemes will advise the board if they do reach out again;
• learned the district made a switch to T-Mobile on cellular and router services to increase service capability, meaning a savings of close to $700 monthly; and
• learned MCAD answered 473 calls for emergency service in March with Base 1 (Hannibal) 2711 handling 119 calls, 2721 handling 109 calls, Base 2 (Hannibal) handling 153 calls, and Base 3 (Palmyra) handling 63 calls. Off-duty or call in crews handled 10 calls, and the Cardinal Glennon unit had 19 transports.
Following the close of the regular meeting, the board adjourned, then met again to elect new officers, following the election.
Dot Lake was again voted as president; and Branson Wells as vice president. Tom Rupp was elected secretary/treasurer.
The board then went into closed session to discuss personnel.
Back in open session, Nemes advised the board that EMS Week runs from May 16-22, and the administrative staff will be cooking for the crews that week. He encouraged the board members to join them for lunch on any of the days they’re cooking.
The next meeting is scheduled for Thursday, May 20.