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Barry-Lawrence Ambulance board reorganizes

Thursday, April 23, 2009

The board of the Barry-Lawrence Ambulance District reorganized at its April meeting and reviewed a detailed report on drug handling by pharmacist John Bruner.

No election was needed this year to fill the board positions. One candidate filed for each of the vacancies. Welcomed back were Rick Vanderpool, now serving District One after a two-year absence, and Marty Newman from District Four. Both will serve three-year terms.

Howard Kuhnert returned to fill the two open years remaining on the seat representing District Six. Mike Bennett will fill the one-year opening on the seat from District Two, which he started to represent last year.

Kuhnert's motion to retain all the present officers passed unanimously. Daryl Fenski, from District Five, remained chairman, and Newman will continue as vice chairman. Office manager Jeaneittia Pierce will handle secretarial duties, and billing clerk Stacy Cloud will continue preparing financial reports.

Bruner's periodic report on ways district personnel handle prescription drugs and controlled substances brought no recommendations for changes. He found security was appropriate, procedures were according to the federal regulations posted and usage was well documented. He said unused controlled substances were not transferred to other agencies but were either returned or destroyed by Guaranteed Returns of Holbrook, N.Y.

"The logs document all of the appropriate material including results of the inventory and names of two employees performing the review," Bruner stated. "The district's medical director, Dr. Dennis Hughes, is visiting the site at least once a month and performing an inspection/review of controlled substance record keeping, logs, inventories, administering and wastage, and the medical director has these monthly inspection reports available for the district staff."

The April meeting covered two months of activities, as the board did not meet in March due to scheduling conflicts.

Run reports for the first quarter of 2009 showed ambulances made 12 percent fewer trips than in the first three months of 2008. However, the total was only four runs less than the first quarter of 2007 and 11 percent higher than the first quarter of 2006.

Crews took 61 patients to Cox Monett Hospital in February and 55 in March. Springfield hospitals got 48 in February and 61 in March. Hospitals in Aurora and Cassville got 10 patients in February and five in March. Crews took seven patients to nursing homes in February and 12 in March.

In February, crews turned three calls over to other services while completing four calls on mutual aid requests. In March, crews turned five calls over to other services and completed no additional mutual aid runs.

Revenue received on patient accounts through March ran almost $3,300 ahead of last year.

During the two pay periods in February, the district paid 506.25 hours of overtime while paying 608 hours in the two pay periods in March.

The only employee change in the past two months came in the hiring of Kevin Lasater as an on-call paramedic.

Education Supervisor Richard Pierce reported the class training emergency medical technicians on Mondays and Wednesdays presently has five students. Pierce is planning to schedule a class on extrication in May. Classes for the public on cardio-pulmonary resuscitation and first aid remain available upon request.

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