The Advanced Life Service that has been available in the Starke County area for just over a year is doing well, according to EMS Director Paul Mathewson.
“It’s going great,” stated Mathewson. “When you have a committed staff of employees from the paramedics to the EMTs to the office staff and you’re on the same page to try to achieve the same goal of providing the best service around, great things can happen.”
Mathewson said the ALS service is an extreme benefit for community members in their time of need.
“Anytime that you can have additional resources within your own county in terms of the paramedics, the advances, to have the highest level of EMS care possible, is wonderful – especially in a rural community. It’s great when you’re 10, maybe 30 minutes away from a health care facility,” Mathewson said.
When it used to take four hours to diagnose a possible heart attack victim, an ALS certified technician can get tests done immediately and take you to the appropriate facility in a matter of minutes instead of hours. ALS service can be the difference between life and death.
Paramedics are happy to help residents at a critical point and new paramedics are coming on board as the ALS service starts to build.
“We’ve had one so far in Monica Combs. She has been fantastic. We have a few that are in classes right now – one is finishing up while the other three are pretty much dedicated for a year to what they’re doing. It’s neat to see the EMTs on staff want to grow in their own careers,” said Mathewson.
Mathewson said there are still Basic Life Service EMTs that also do a great job for the county.
In terms of money to cover the service, Mathewson is pleased with how it’s coming together.
“What we’ve been able to do with the paramedics is cover the cost of what it took to really get the paramedics going in the first place. I know the council and the commissioners have focused a lot of energy and time into making sure that we cover what we borrowed in terms of money to get the project going. To see that come together has been very beneficial,” Mathewson said.
If you have any further questions about ALS service, contact the staff at (574) 772-9140.