Mercy EMS is no more.
Bourbon County Emergency Medical Services is, as of today, April 1, the new ambulance service for the community.
For emergency situations, you still dial 911.
“For emergencies, you can dial 911,” Bruner said. “For all non-emergency calls, the public can contact me at 620-223-2140.” Bruner is the Fort Scott Deputy Fire Chief.
Bruner is a representative of the City of Fort Scott on a task force that was given the job of transitioning the services, there were also representatives from Bourbon County and Mercy Hospital.
“The transition has been a learning process with all the licensing and credentialing that takes place,” Bruner said. “We are very appreciative to Mercy with the assistance they have provided to make this transition into Bourbon County EMS.”
“Currently, we will remain stationed at Mercy Hospital and the Fort Scott Fire Department Station 1 (located on National Avenue),” Bruner said.
The city will operate the ambulance, the county will bill the insurance and receive the revenue and then reimburse the city. The majority of this budget is wages, taxes and benefits, according to the Fort Scott City Commission March 19 minutes.
“We currently have six ambulances,” Bruner said. “Three of those are staffed 24/7.”
Currently, there are 11 full-time emergency medical services staff members, according to Bruner.
“Of those, four are paramedics, 1 paramedic/registered nurse and six emergency medical technicians,” Bruner said. “In addition to the full-time staff, we have 15 PRN staff. Of those four are paramedics, four are AEMT’s and seven are EMT’s.”
“Other than the logo change on the uniforms and the decals on the trucks, the service remains the same,” Bruner said.
“We now have most, if not all, of the enrollment completed with all identified insurance carriers,” Bourbon County Commissioner Lynne Oharah said. “But it’s early in the insurance reimbursement process and we will be able to obtain a clearer picture of our monthly insurance reimbursements going forward. We are hopeful that reimbursements will cover expenses.”
Building Donated By Mercy
A building on the campus of the former Mercy Hospital is being remodeled for Bourbon County EMS.
“Renovations are still being completed at the new EMS headquarters located on the northeast corner of the Mercy Campus,” Bruner said.
“Mercy has graciously offered the donation of the EMS building,” Jody Hoenor, a member of the task force, said. “We are only waiting on the finalization of some of this paperwork.”
County jail work-release prisoners have worked on the renovation of the building, with work slated for completion by April 15, Hoenor said.
New EMS Director Being Sought
Christi Keating is the current EMS Director but is resigning, according to the city minutes.
“They have been interviewing candidates and we will be announcing the new hire soon,” Hoenor said.
Mercy Hospital closed in December 2018.
Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas now operates the medical clinic at the site, while Ascension Via Christi operates the emergency services department.
Each Kansas county must provide ambulance services to its residents, according to state statute, Commissioner Oharah said.