Starkville approves motion to create new ambulance service

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STARKVILLE, Miss. (WCBI)- The Starkville Board of Alderman voted to accept a contract from Pafford Emergency Medical Services at Tuesday’s meeting.

There are a few changes the city would like to see, within the contract, pertaining to insurance and the city’s liability.

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The board voted 6 to 1 in the motion to create a new EMS service. This means the city will no longer use OCH for ambulance services.

Richard Hilton, OCH Regional Medical Center’s CEO, said this will likely increase some patient’s costs, and he doesn’t believe response time has impacted patient care.

“If it was, our doctors should be speaking up and saying ‘hey we need to do a better job,’ and that has not come,” said Hilton.

The mayor said some people may have to pay up to $500 more, but she believes it’s worth it.

“Offering the opportunity to have a quicker service to you when a life is hanging in the balance, I think it’s worth the additional cost if it does come to that,” said Mayor Lynn Spruill.

Hilton says the nearly 62% of OCH’s responses are to the city, but the decision will not impact the quality of service or responses in the county.

Hilton says most of the money made comes from patient transfers, so even though 62% is a large number, he said it won’t make a big difference to their bottom line.

He said he doesn’t plan on making any cuts.

The Board of Alderman says it’s plan is to have the new service up and running by August 1st.

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