More than 30 EMS agencies in central Illinois are receiving grant funding to help meet training and certification requirements.
Thirty-two emergency medical service (EMS) agencies in nine counties will receive more than $17,000 in grant money from the Memorial Medical Center Foundation to purchase instructional materials required for on-site training and certification.
According to this morning’s announcement by Memorial Health Systems, the grant will allow the agencies to purchase American Heart Association instructional books for Basic Life Support (BLS), Advanced Life Support (ALS), and Pediatric Life Support (PLS) and will allow the groups to train and educate staff and increase the instructor pool at each agency.
15 EMS agencies in West Central Illinois will receive the grants. Some of which include Lifestar Ambulance service in Jacksonville, fire departments in Jacksonville, South Jacksonville, Waverly, Ashland, Arenzville, and New Berlin, as well as EMS and Rescue Squad agencies in Chapin, Winchester, Meredosia, and Murrayville-Woodson among others.
The grant comes at a time in which many EMS groups are struggling to maintain operational budgets that have been negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The EMS agencies that will share the grant are associated with Memorial Health System, which serves as the resource organization for the groups.
Sara Brown, manager of Memorial Health System EMS says maintaining certification can be an arduous and expensive process, and this grant will help relieve this particular burden on the Health System’s agencies during the pandemic.
The $17,821 grant to purchase the necessary training and instruction books comes from the Memorial Medical Center Foundation. The board approved an off-cycle grant due to the urgency of the need to accommodate changes in the American Heart Association curriculum, which is updated every five years.
Melissa Hansen Schmadeke, executive director of the Memorial Medical Center Foundation says they are committed to helping local EMS agencies continue their lifesaving work within our communities.
The full list of agencies receiving grants from the Memorial Medical Center Foundation:
Lifestar Ambulance – Jacksonville
Beardstown Fire Department
Jacksonville Fire Department
New Berlin – Island Grove Fire Department
South Jacksonville Fire Department
Chapin Are Rescue Squad
Waverly Fire Department
Meredosia Volunteer Rescue Squad
Ashland Fire Department
Chandlerville Fire Department
Petersburg Community Fire Department
Murrayville-Woodson Emergency Ambulance Service
Alexander Fire Protection District
Arenzville Fire and Rescue