The EMS situation in Yell County is, at the very best, a touchy issue.
First of all, the Yell County Quorum Court turned down a lease by Chambers Memorial Hospital that would have solved the problem for the future of EMS.
The hospital has the resources and the departments to handle billing and operations of EMS. The employees of EMS are excellent and hopefully would have stayed with the county service.
Rick Padgett is chairman of the quorum court committee trying to find a solution for EMS and its operation.
Unfortunately, when the full JP court took out the hospital it left no other options other than an outside vendor because the county cannot afford to operate EMS with its present budget.
In an article in this week’s Yell County Record and the Post Dispatch, we quoted Padgett as saying the county was placed in “Peril” because of EMS employees quitting the county service in the past month or so.
This editor takes the blame for using “Peril” in the article as I should have said Padgett was concerned about losing EMS employees.
In my editorial I also stated Padgett, like myself, was not sure why so many EMS employees were leaving the county service.
First of all, Rick should not be receiving the criticism from EMS employees or the public.
He has from day one tried to have his committee solve the EMS problem and time after time his committee failed to agree on a plan to help solve this problem.
He was for the hospital taking over EMS because it was the best alternative.
As the editor of the Yell County Record and Mary, as editor of the Dardanelle Post Dispatch, we want to apologize to Rick for using the wrong word in his statement. We should have said he was simply “Concerned” on losing so many key EMS employees.
We hope the EMS employees and the public will not blame Rick for what we said in our newspapers.
He has been a champion in trying to solve this problem and naturally, we are also concerned about some of our key EMS employees leaving the county service.
David and Mary Fisher