Aiken County EMS may soon see new coordinator

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Tuesday July 29, 2014

AIKEN COUNTY, S.C. (WRDW)—Aiken County EMS could soon see a new coordinator. County administrator Clay Killian says they do have a candidate in mind for that position but aren’t yet ready to name that person.

Last year, a News 12 investigation uncovered a series of problems including staffing issues, unfit living quarters for employees and equipment issues. But emergency services director Tommy Thompson said that things have changed.

“We've really pulled together over the last 12 months or so,” Thompson said, “Because we've been through some trials and tribulations and it's made us much stronger.”

But some say that the problem hasn’t gotten much better in the past year.

“It’s kind of been an ongoing thing for over a year now,” said Janice Lewis who lives in Medic Station 6’s coverage area, “most families around this area would rather take their family members to the hospital than wait on an ambulance.”

With former EMS director Harvey Jay’s retirement in June, EMS has been without a formal department head. But that soon may change, for some, that’s not enough.

“If we have an emergency it's going to take them anywhere from 45 minutes to an hour to reach us,” added Lewis.