ACMC Board Heavy-Hearted Due to Lack of EMS Funding Solution

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?