County Board hopes to provide KDMC new ambulance

Published 10:00 am Wednesday, August 18, 2021

The local ambulance service needs a new ambulance and the county Board of Supervisors hopes to provide it.

King’s Daughters Medical Center CEO Alvin Hoover says the hospital is in need of a new ambulance due to wear and tear on current units.

Hoover recently asked the Lincoln County Board of Supervisors for $70,000 toward the purchase of a new ambulance, the total cost of which would be approximately $135,000.

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Hoover said the hospital would buy the ambulance itself regardless because it had to be done, but asked the county for help toward the purchase, which would replace one of the ambulance service’s current units. Hoover also submitted a request to the Brookhaven Board of Aldermen for a contribution toward the total.

Monday, District 4 Supervisor Eddie Brown, also board president, proposed that some of the money the county has for COVID expenses be used to meet that need in full.

“I would like to suggest that we as a board buy that ambulance outright,” Brown said, “as a good gesture from the county of our support.”

County Administrator David Fields said he believed that would be an appropriate use of the funds, and added he would be able to get answers to specific questions about how the money can be used at the Mississippi Association of Supervisors’ meeting Sept. 8.

“I believe we’d be able to help them,” Fields said.

“You’re saying purchase the ambulance and donate it to the ambulance service, or …” said Board Attorney Will Allen.

“Give them the money and they make the purchase,” Brown said.

“If they’re adding an ambulance, will they be able to staff it?” asked District 3 Supervisor Nolan Williamson.

Brown said he believed the ambulance would replace a current unit and therefore utilize current staff. Because staffing is an issue at a large number of hospitals throughout the state, including KDMC, Brown said the purchase of the ambulance would free up the hospital’s funds for such things as hiring additional staff.

“The hospital is going to need every nickel they have for funding staffing,” he said.

Williamson suggested the matter be tabled until Fields could get confirmation on use of the funds, and the remainder of the board agreed.