Crossett, AR, May 1, 2018— To continue our 110-year legacy of service
to the citizens of Ashley County, we at Ashley County Medical Center (ACMC)
believe that you cannot put a price tag on a life. With this mission,
we took it upon ourselves to sustain Ashley County’s current Emergency
Medical Service when approached by FAST ambulance service in April 2017.
That is when the service agreement between FAST and ACMC was formed. Since
the formation of the agreement, ACMC has spent $132,000 in keeping FAST
ambulance service open with April and May of this year, still outstanding.
Realizing that this was not a sustainable option for ACMC, we began discussing
with community leaders, mayors, and physicians the vital importance of
an ambulance service to serve Ashley County.
In keeping with our mission to care for the citizens of Ashley County,
we determined that a partnership was needed with the citizens and our
elected leaders in order to provide a sustainable Emergency Medical Service.
Beginning May of 2017, ACMC made multiple proposals to the Quorum Court;
one of which was selected but required a $542,000 subsidy per year to
sustain this Emergency Medical Service. To date, the Ashley County Quorum
Court has yet to find a funding solution for a much-needed Emergency Medical Service.
With the emphasis and value in which we hold human life, it is with heavy-hearts
that our Board of Directors made the decision to withdraw our proposal
and will cease funding effective May 31, 2018. We must be good stewards
of our resources to continue to sustain our service to the citizens of
this county. At this point, Ashley County Medical Center can no longer
afford to support an unsubsidized Emergency Medical Service. Our original
proposal stated our funding of an Emergency Medical Service be contingent
on adequate funding and support from Ashley County leadership. We hope
and pray that our elected officials will find a way to solve this crisis
and keep in mind what is in the best interest for the citizens of Ashley
County. ACMC’s goal is to provide all citizens of Ashley County
and the surrounding area with the best possible healthcare. If the value
of life is not a decision maker, what is?