Online Originals: FEMA assisting NC counties with EMS shortages


GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — The Federal Emergency Management Agency is assisting hospital systems here in the state suffering from EMS and other medical resource shortages due to the coronavirus pandemic.

On September 10, North Carolina State Emergency Management had requested 40 Advanced Life Support and 10 Basic Life Support ambulances and crews from FEMA. FEMA sent 25 Advanced Life Support ambulances to nine North Carolina counties needing the most support. Each ambulance is staffed by two EMS workers. They arrived in the state on September 26.

They have been allocated as follows:

  • 2 ambulances will be stationed in Franklin County
  • 3 in Robenson County
  • 5 in Mecklenburg County
  • 4 in New Hanover County
  • 3 in Guilford County
  • And 2 each in Brunswick, Graham, Macon, and Pender counties

The ambulance crews are contracted to remain in the counties until October 25. Every 10 days, needs will be re-evaluated to see if changes need to be made.

“Did we get the mix right, did we send the right number to the right county. We might have to adjust that after the first 10 days,” Communications Officer for NC Emergency Management Keith Acree said.

Acree said this isn’t the only federal assistance the state is currently receiving from FEMA. The FEMA staff have a mobile vaccination clinic set up in the western part of the state. With 30 staff members provided by FEMA, they are helping six NC counties run their monoclonal antibody testing.

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