Penns Valley EMS
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A vital Centre County medical service finds itself facing an unhealthy financial future. This week they're holding a public meeting to discuss options. In Eastern Center County, the Penns Valley Ambulance Service providing emergency medical services to a very rural population. "We run about 850 call per year. We cover a population of about 13 thousand people in an area of 250 square miles. That's a tremendous large area with a low population and low call volume." Close to 60 percent of the services comes from insurance reimbursements from ambulance runs. "What we're finding out now is that those funding resources have dried up and volunteers have dried up. Reimbursement cover half to two thirds of a call, and now we're facing like the rest of the state the decision of how we're going to fund EMS." Administrators do not have the ambulance service on life support quite yet but they say that's only a year or two down the road. They have make changes and look at new options. "That's something on the table and something that we're certainly wanting to discuss and want any discussion of a merger to happen sooner rather than later." Another option tacking on a half a mil property taxes to fund the service. It's not the most popular choice. "So the idea of mentioning it. I have had some phone calls already from the visits that we have had with people unhappy. I fully understand that." So they want to hear more from the public. This weeks meeting is set for Thursday night at the Penns Valley EMS building in Spring Mills, it will begin at 7 Pm.