Paramedicine, Paid Volunteer Fire Positions Among Retreat Discussions

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The Vance County Board of Commissioners met at Perry Memorial Library on Tuesday for the first of two planned retreat days designed to assist with the review of current plans and development of new goals for the coming fiscal year.

Commissioners heard presentations from County department heads on their respective office’s current fiscal year accomplishments and priorities moving forward.

EMS Director Javier Plummer and Vance County Fire Marshal Keith Duncan shared the details of their respective portion of the presentation with WIZS News.

Plummer led a discussion on the need for a Community Paramedicine program within the EMS department. Paramedicine is a program that allows paramedics to operate in expanded roles by assisting with public health, primary healthcare and preventive services to certain populations within the community.

According to Plummer, the main focus of the program is to 1) provide and connect patients to primary care services; 2) in some cases, complete post-hospital follow-up care; 3) integrate with local public health agencies, home health agencies, health systems and other providers; 4) provide education and promote health and 5) not duplicate available services within the community.

“As far as EMS is concerned for the planning retreat, I mainly discussed our call volume with the Board of Commissioners as well as the purchase of equipment,” said Plummer.  “Our goals going forward are the addition of Captain’s positions and the development of a Community Paramedicine program.”

Duncan reported his accomplishments for the current fiscal year included the rewriting of contracts between volunteer fire departments and County government, as well as the establishment of paid personnel in volunteer departments.

The contracts allowed for increased appropriations and funds for hiring staff at volunteer fire departments. “Departments were able to fund two paid personnel for 12 hours a day Monday through Friday this fiscal year,” said Duncan. “To date, this has worked great and has verifiably reduced response times for the citizens. As an added benefit, these departments run first responder calls that help with the EMS call volume.”

Commissioners will reconvene on Monday, February 10, 2020, for the second day of the planning retreat. The meeting will be held in the Farm Bureau Room of Perry Memorial Library in Henderson from 8:30 a.m. until 1 p.m.

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