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Magoffin County receives green light on license regarding ambulance service

Published: Sep. 14, 2021 at 7:32 PM EDT
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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WSAZ) - After waiting more than a year for an answer, Magoffin County Fiscal Court was granted a Certificate of Need (CON).

The change came after a WSAZ Investigation revealed an ambulance wasn’t available during more than a dozen emergencies in Magoffin County. Each time, a crew from a neighboring county had to respond, according to 911 logs and county Judge-Executive Matthew Wireman.

WSAZ checked in daily over two weeks when state officials with the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services said, “A hearing would be scheduled in the near future.”

Magoffin County officials wanted to open its own service because people in the region who need medical attention have to wait longer for help to arrive.

The only ambulance provider in the county was Lifeguard, which currently serves Magoffin and four surrounding counties.

In the filing, obtained exclusively by WSAZ, the county proposed plans to staff two ambulances, a BLS and ALS 24 hours per day, 365 days per year.

The inspector general cited they received letters from school-aged children pleading for additional EMS providers to provide care for their grandparents.

State officials also said, “from April 2019 through October 2019 there were over 100 instances of response times by the Affected Party exceeding 30 minutes for emergency calls. Some of these responses were from Floyd and Pike Counties.”

There are still additional steps before the county can open its service.

Magoffin County will have to apply for an additional license to operate its ambulance service from the Kentucky Board of Emergency Medical Services.

Magoffin County’s CON will be issued in 40 days following now rebuttal from Lifeguard.

State officials told WSAZ that Lifeguard withdrew its claim against Magoffin County one week after WSAZ’s investigation “Fatal Flaw” aired. Lifeguard previously filed a claim against Magoffin County to the inspector general, citing they could meet the needs of the community and didn’t need additional EMS providers.

WSAZ Investigates | Fatal Flaw

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