BY JOE B. COATES
On Monday, Copiah supervisors opened bids from two ambulance services–ASAP EMS out of Laurel and Rural Rapid Response based in Meadville– competing to be the new providers for the county after Hardy Wilson Memorial Hospital will cease providing the service on April 10. Both bidders provided our county’s leadership with detailed information on services available, costs associated with the services to patients and the proposed money the county must guarantee to the company.
The long and short of it is Copiah County residents can rest assured that at least two–and most likely three– ambulance crews and equipment will remain in the county at all times after April 10. We shouldn’t miss a beat. One or two in Hazlehurst at HWMH and one in Crystal Springs at the fire station. Staffing the crews will be highly trained emergency personnel.
The bottom line in the bids is this: Rural Rapid Response says it requires a subsidy of $721,050 per year from Copiah County taxpayers, while ASAP is proposing $100,000 per year–both for at least a 3 year contract. If all proposed services are expected to be equal, which they appear to be, which one do you think Joe Taxpayer would choose?
The money is talking . . . loudly.