The Ocean Shores City Council late last month authorized the process by which payments the city has received from a Medicaid program called Ground Emergency Medical Transportation (GEMT) will be used to purchase a new ambulance, replacing the 16-year-old unit that has logged more than 200,000 miles. Council also approved a new heart monitor and new ventilator.
When the city’s 2019-2020 budget was approved by council last year, uncertainty on when and how much GEMT funds would be received meant spending authority for a new ambulance was not included. As of Oct. 28, the city has received net GEMT funds totaling $340,995, described as one-time catch up payments from a 2017 gap between actual costs and Medicaid reimbursements. Information provided to council by Finance Director Angela Folkers showed a total of $461,895 in GEMT funds are due the city.
Ocean Shores Fire Chief Mike Thurier told the Oct. 28 council meeting they received one quote, from Braun Northwest of Chehalis, totaling $221,451.31, with delivery in eight to nine months. The ambulance would be a 2020 Dodge Ram 4500 4×4 “Ambulance Prep” diesel chassis with specialized equipment to match the three newer ambulances the department uses.
The companion request for a new heart monitor and ventilator, to be used in the new ambulance, completes the concept of making all the department’s ambulances set up the same to save EMS responders the seconds that may make critical differences in emergency situations.
Thurier said the sole bid had come from Zoll Medical Corp. of Chelmsford, Mass., totaling $45,311.15 with delivery in 60 to 90 days.
In other news, just after completing their 49th annual Kids Halloween party at the Ocean Shores Convention Center, the Ocean Shores Firefighters Association is preparing for the event that pays for the spooky spectacular, their annual Easter Egg Hunt, a scholarship program, other community activities, and purchase of professional equipment. It’s the annual Turkey Bingo party on Friday, Nov. 22, at the Convention Center. Lots of turkeys, pies and trimmings will be won at this fun event, where the doors open at 5:15 and bingo starts at 6 p.m.