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Thread: Major ambulance service shuts down without notice in six states

  1. #1

    Exclamation Major ambulance service shuts down without notice in six states



    By M. Alex Johnson, Staff Writer, NBC News

    A private ambulance service that transported more than a half-million patients a year in six states abruptly shut down without explanation, leaving dozens of cities and towns scrambling for medical transportation options this week without a word of warning.

    First Med EMS, based in Wilmington, N.C., served hospitals and other medical facilities in more than 70 municipalities in Kentucky, North Carolina, Ohio, South Carolina, Virginia and West Virginia. It operated under the names TransMed, Life Ambulance and MedCorp, boasting in publicity materials: "We take pride in our performance and the safety of our patients. We refuse to compromise on this."

    First Med's website was inaccessible Tuesday, and calls to corporate offices either reached disconnected lines or weren't answered. Company workers said in Facebook posts and tweets that they were told the corporation had declared bankruptcy, but no bankruptcy documents were yet on file in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina.

    First Med was the largest EMS service in Ohio, where at least 1,500 paramedics and other medical workers were left jobless in Cleveland, Columbus, Dayton, Toledo, Cincinnati, Youngstown and numerous smaller towns.

    First Med also provided services in Richmond, Norfolk and Newport News in Virginia, as well as Wilmington, N.C.

    Much of First Med's business was "non-emergent" transportation — such as taking dialysis patients to their weekly treatments and shuttling nursing home patients to doctors' appointments — and officials in some cities said there should be little impact on patient treatment.

    "The unfortunate thing was lack of notice," Larry Stephens, ambulance service director for Camden Clark Medical Center in Parkersburg, W.Va., told NBC station WTAP. "They closed up shop on Friday, and people were scrambling to get to their appointments all weekend, plus early this week."

    Many of the company's approximately 2,300 employees learned about the shutdown from colleagues. When they tried to show up for work Saturday, they found locked doors.

    "I found out on Facebook and from a co-worker that I no longer had a job," Stacey Carpenter, a First Med dispatcher in Wilmington, told NBC station WECT. "I am absolutely devastated. I don't know what I am going to do."

    Dispatch services in several cities reported that First Med called them Friday night and Saturday to stop all requests for emergency runs. Workers who were in the middle of their shifts were told to turn around and go home.

    "We didn't know what to do," Derek Griffin, an emergency medical technician in Hopewell, Va., told NBC station WWBT of Richmond.

    "They told us to turn our truck in, to turn our equipment in. That was it," he said. "It was done so shadily and so behind closed doors."

    Medical facilities said the shutdown took them by surprise, too, and at least one county — Bertie County, N.C. — declared a state of emergency at noon Monday. The county board of commissioners said in a statement that it would pursue legal claims against First Med.

    http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013...ix-states?lite
    "A free people ought not only to be armed and disciplined, but they should have sufficient arms and ammunition to maintain a status of independence from any who might attempt to abuse them, which would include their own government." George Washington



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  3. #2
    Wonder if it has to do with Obamacare.
    "Like an army falling, one by one by one" - Linkin Park

  4. #3
    The county board of commissioners said in a statement that it would pursue legal claims against First Med.
    Dumb assery.


    But this will be used as an argument against privatization of services.

  5. #4
    "We'll tell you how to do your business, how much you must pay your employees and what benefits you must provide, how much you have to pay stay in business, and if you don't like it and close shop, we'll sue you!"
    "When a portion of wealth is transferred from the person who owns it—without his consent and without compensation, and whether by force or by fraud—to anyone who does not own it, then I say that property is violated; that an act of plunder is committed." - Bastiat : The Law

    "nothing evil grows in alcohol" ~ @presence

    "I mean can you imagine what it would be like if firemen acted like police officers? They would only go into a burning house only if there's a 100% chance they won't get any burns. I mean, you've got to fully protect thy self first." ~ juleswin

  6. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by ClydeCoulter View Post
    "We'll tell you how to do your business, how much you must pay your employees and what benefits you must provide, how much you have to pay stay in business, and if you don't like it and close shop, we'll sue you!"
    And we'll pass a law that says you must keep bleeding even after we've bled you dry, because we're in charge and we say you can't be bled dry. Just because we want more blood.
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    My tax dollars paid to fund ISIS and make fake beheading videos. Are you saying we shouldn't get our monies worth??

  7. #6
    That's bad news for not only these 2,100 people and the people the transported, but also EMT and Drivers looking for work in those states (especially OH, it looks like). That's not a nice holiday present. It would be nice if there was a care package for these folks. They all seem to qualify for unemployment...
    Lifetime member of more than 1 national gun organization and the New Hampshire Liberty Alliance. Part of Young Americans for Liberty and Campaign for Liberty. Free State Project participant and multi-year Free Talk Live AMPlifier.

  8. #7
    Well, thats what going Galt looks like.
    In New Zealand:
    The Coastguard is a Charity
    Air Traffic Control is a private company run on user fees
    The DMV is a private non-profit
    Rescue helicopters and ambulances are operated by charities and are plastered with corporate logos
    The agriculture industry has zero subsidies
    5% of the national vote, gets you 5 seats in Parliament
    A tax return has 4 fields
    Business licenses aren't even a thing nor are capital gains taxes
    Constitutional right to refuse any type of medical care

  9. #8
    I wonder what the barriers to entry are for some young enterprising person who has the money to buy an old ambulance on Craig's list and would like to hire a few laid off EMTs.
    Quote Originally Posted by BuddyRey View Post
    Do you think it's a coincidence that the most cherished standard of the Ron Paul campaign was a sign highlighting the word "love" inside the word "revolution"? A revolution not based on love is a revolution doomed to failure. So, at the risk of sounding corny, I just wanted to let you know that, wherever you stand on any of these hot-button issues, and even if we might have exchanged bitter words or harsh sentiments in the past, I love each and every one of you - no exceptions!

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    Peace.



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  11. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Henry Rogue View Post
    I wonder what the barriers to entry are for some young enterprising person who has the money to buy an old ambulance on Craig's list and would like to hire a few laid off EMTs.

    LOL, please stop, you is makinz me cries.

  12. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Henry Rogue View Post
    I wonder what the barriers to entry are for some young enterprising person who has the money to buy an old ambulance on Craig's list and would like to hire a few laid off EMTs.
    Much of First Med's business was "non-emergent" transportation — such as taking dialysis patients to their weekly treatments and shuttling nursing home patients to doctors' appointments — and officials in some cities said there should be little impact on patient treatment.
    In a free world,you could buy an old Ford Econoline van and hire a teenager to capture a lot of this business.
    But we don't live in a free world and that is probably why this company went bankrupt in the first place.
    Inspired by US Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, this site is dedicated to facilitating grassroots initiatives that aim to restore a sovereign limited constitutional Republic based on the rule of law, states' rights and individual rights. We seek to enshrine the original intent of our Founders to foster respect for private property, seek justice, provide opportunity, and to secure individual liberty for ourselves and our posterity.


    A police state is a small price to pay for living in the freest country on earth.

  13. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by mad cow View Post
    In a free world,you could buy an old Ford Econoline van and hire a teenager to capture a lot of this business.
    But we don't live in a free world and that is probably why this company went bankrupt in the first place.
    I'm curious as to why you quoted those two statements, specifically the second one.

    ---------

    Many of the company's approximately 2,300 employees learned about the shutdown from colleagues. When they tried to show up for work Saturday, they found locked doors.
    Don't care if your a public or private business, that is just plain bad business practice.

    What do you want me to do, to do for you to see you through?
    A box of rain will ease the pain, and love will see you through.
    Box of Rain, Grateful Dead




    Quote Originally Posted by PaulConventionWV
    A real feminist would have avoided men altogether and found a perfectly good female partner. Because, y'know, all sexual intercourse is actually rape.
    निर्विकल्पा
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    I was a nasty woman before Trump made it cool.

  14. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Nirvikalpa View Post
    ... that is just plain bad business practice.
    Yeah, the company that is closing it's doors is worried about it's reputation.

    It's standard practice to do things like this to avoid confrontations (ie. workplace violence). It's a safety issue.
    I compiled a "brief" history of events since October 2008 that are defining the global currency war and the role that gold is playing:

    Tin Foil Hats, Economic Reality and the Total Perspective Vortex

    Also, have you contacted your Congressional Rep and asked them co-sponsor Ron Paul's Rep. Paul Broun Jr.'s HR 1098 77: Free Competition in Currencies Act?

  15. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by idiom View Post
    Well, thats what going Galt looks like.
    That's what I told my wife, yesterday
    "When a portion of wealth is transferred from the person who owns it—without his consent and without compensation, and whether by force or by fraud—to anyone who does not own it, then I say that property is violated; that an act of plunder is committed." - Bastiat : The Law

    "nothing evil grows in alcohol" ~ @presence

    "I mean can you imagine what it would be like if firemen acted like police officers? They would only go into a burning house only if there's a 100% chance they won't get any burns. I mean, you've got to fully protect thy self first." ~ juleswin

  16. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Bern View Post
    Yeah, the company that is closing it's doors is worried about it's reputation.

    It's standard practice to do things like this to avoid confrontations (ie. workplace violence). It's a safety issue.
    Amazingly, when my EMS company shut down (private), we had advance notice of it - enough where we could apply for jobs elsewhere and not be screwed over in the recertification process for our EMT cert (my company was one of the few in my County who would hold Refresher EMT classes - them closing and therefor canceling their classes would have left me without a valid EMT license).

    This is not standard practice for EMS companies, because this goes beyond a company closing and people losing their job... it extends to perhaps really screwing their employees who were due on their CPR certification (they did provide CPR courses, from the website I found), and perhaps even worse - EMD (dispatch) certification, and EMT certification, which can expire every 3-5 years and varies with the state. Believe what you wish, but it doesn't exactly make private companies a shining star in people's eyes.

    Your workplace violence and "safety issue" excuse is plain bull$#@!.

    What do you want me to do, to do for you to see you through?
    A box of rain will ease the pain, and love will see you through.
    Box of Rain, Grateful Dead




    Quote Originally Posted by PaulConventionWV
    A real feminist would have avoided men altogether and found a perfectly good female partner. Because, y'know, all sexual intercourse is actually rape.
    निर्विकल्पा
    aka Wicked Heathen
    I was a nasty woman before Trump made it cool.

  17. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Henry Rogue View Post
    I wonder what the barriers to entry are for some young enterprising person who has the money to buy an old ambulance on Craig's list and would like to hire a few laid off EMTs.
    State certifications.

  18. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Root View Post
    State certifications.
    As well as retesting all equipment, throwing out equipment that can't be transferred over, reordering equipment that is in line with your state's protocols, providing the state with copies of valid CPR, AED, and EMT/EMD certifications for each employee, and so on and so forth.

    What do you want me to do, to do for you to see you through?
    A box of rain will ease the pain, and love will see you through.
    Box of Rain, Grateful Dead




    Quote Originally Posted by PaulConventionWV
    A real feminist would have avoided men altogether and found a perfectly good female partner. Because, y'know, all sexual intercourse is actually rape.
    निर्विकल्पा
    aka Wicked Heathen
    I was a nasty woman before Trump made it cool.



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  20. #17
    smells like an embezzlement situation - speculation: they thought they had money to operate the business plan and when they looked, it was gone

  21. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Henry Rogue View Post
    I wonder what the barriers to entry are for some young enterprising person who has the money to buy an old ambulance on Craig's list and would like to hire a few laid off EMTs.
    A big one will be the liability insurance. I would bet it is a real ball-buster like that for malpractice.

    I once saw my gf's brother's tax return. He is an orthopedic surgeon in NJ. That year he grossed $650K and nearly $200K went to malpractice insurance. It was a pretty sickening thing to learn.
    Through lives and lives shalt thou pay, O' king.

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  22. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Nirvikalpa View Post
    As well as retesting all equipment, throwing out equipment that can't be transferred over, reordering equipment that is in line with your state's protocols, providing the state with copies of valid CPR, AED, and EMT/EMD certifications for each employee, and so on and so forth.
    I break these down into two catagories.
    1. Capital - Easy for an entrepreneur to obtain.
    2. The State - protocols, regulations, certifications, licenses, permits and fees that make it difficult for a new operator to fill the demand.

  23. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Seraphim View Post
    Wonder if it has to do with Obamacare.
    I'm betting it does. Actually I'm really hoping it does!

    -t

  24. #21

  25. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by Nirvikalpa View Post
    I'm curious as to why you quoted those two statements, specifically the second one.

    ---------



    Don't care if your a public or private business, that is just plain bad business practice.
    I quoted the first one because I hit the reply with quote button to Henry Rogue and wanted to give a possible alternative answer to his question.

    The second quote is from the OP,and dealt with non-emergent transportation being much of this company's business.
    Shuttling nursing home patients around to Doctors' appointments should not require an ambulance or licensed EMT's.
    Inspired by US Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, this site is dedicated to facilitating grassroots initiatives that aim to restore a sovereign limited constitutional Republic based on the rule of law, states' rights and individual rights. We seek to enshrine the original intent of our Founders to foster respect for private property, seek justice, provide opportunity, and to secure individual liberty for ourselves and our posterity.


    A police state is a small price to pay for living in the freest country on earth.



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