City Council hears case for Advanced Life Support services

Patrick Fisher

Staff Writer

A program that would offer an Advanced Life Support (ALS) service to New Prague, Montgomery, Belle Plaine and Le Center is in the beginning stages.

Michael Parrish, Director of North Memorial Ambulance Service, presented a proposal for the program to the New Prague City Council at its September 5 meeting. He said that 18 months ago Dr. Mike Wilcox, medical director for the New Prague Ambulance Service, contacted him about exploring an ALS program in the area. Currently the ambulance service offers a Basic Life Support service.

The four communities would work with North Memorial Ambulance and Mdewakanton Emergency Services, which serves the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community. Those two organizations would supply paramedics to the local ambulance services, answering medical calls as needed. The ALS service would have individual contracts with the four communities. It was estimated that start up costs would run between $75,000 and $76,000.

Dr. Wilcox said this program offers an opportunity to get advanced help more quickly to people suffering from heart ailments and strokes. He added that the growth in this area makes it more feasible to offer the ALS service.

There are still some details to be worked out such as where to have the service vehicle placed and how it and the four communities would communicate. The service would start out covering the area for 16 hours a day.

Representatives of the program will be meeting with the city councils of the other communities over the next few weeks.

The consensus of the New Prague council was to continue exploring the program.

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