Majors: Solidifying our EMS system for decades to come

Letter to the Editor, Seneca County Emergency Services Director Ken Majors | Aug. 13, 2021
Seneca County EMS was formally introduced to the community in 1978 with a joint agreement between the townships and the Seneca County Commissioners.
For more than four decades we have peacefully co-existed through many community emergencies, disasters, hardships and have witnessed many miracles along the way.
We have built our reputation as one of the few primarily volunteer EMS agencies in northwest Ohio and are a respected member of the local, regional and state EMS community.
All our successes and opportunities have been due to the selfless commitment of time, labor and energy from our volunteer workforce that is second to none.
Everything we have ever done has been accomplished without the expectation of reward, accolades or payment.
No one can deny the heart and the selfless sacrifice of the EMS volunteer.
Unfortunately, the national trend is apparent here as it is across the world concerning the rapid decline in the number of volunteers available to do this strenuous work around the clock. This is evidenced by national organizations such as The Red Cross, Salvation Army and others. We are all feeling the pain of losing one of our most valued resources.
Locally, there simply are not enough volunteers to handle the workload of Emergency Medical care in our local and rural communities.
We have an opportunity to move to a paid EMS workforce that consists of combination full-time paid, part-time paid and on-call volunteers that can progressively move Seneca County EMS into the future.
We can do this through the commitment of our local, county and regional elected leaders.
Through strong leadership that focuses on the value of the patient first and commits to providing the best pre-hospital care available at the most affordable cost, we can successfully move forward without limiting ourselves to relying solely on volunteers to bear this significant burden alone.
Operationally, there are hundreds of different options that can allow volunteers, paid and part-time EMS staffing to work together and accomplish the age-old task of emergency care anytime and anywhere, including safe transportation to a hospital. Not 100% volunteer and not 100% paid, but any combination of the two can be successful over the long haul.
Using proven methods from other agencies, and evidence-based medicine as our guide, we can succeed together in forging ahead using existing financial resources to enhance our infrastructure and personnel.
The evolution of our system will lead to full-time paid, fully-staffed ambulances in anywhere from two to four geographically central locations. This is a long-term plan that must begin before we can ever hope to achieve it. Rome wasn’t built in a day!
The lives of our residents depend on good decision-making and the forward-thinking of our leadership.
Help us help you by supporting Seneca County EMS as we move toward the future. Let’s face it: We are better together!
We want to ensure that our children and grandchildren get the care they deserve when they dial 9-1-1 in Seneca County for decades to come.