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LEWISBURG, Pa. -- Evangelical Community Hospital announced on Friday, June 21, 2019, its intent to form a new organization called Evangelical Regional Mobile Medical Services (ERMMS). This new subsidiary will be a nonprofit corporation owned by the Hospital and will serve to provide consistent, high-quality emergency response services to the surrounding communities.

Mifflinburg Ambulance Company will be the first strategic partner to join the new organization. The company agreed to be part of the new corporation during a meeting of its members held on June 20.

“If other entities have an interest in joining, we certainly look forward to those conversations,” Kendra Aucker, President and CEO of Evangelical Community Hospital. “But it’s important for everyone to understand we will continue to work with all of the area’s EMS organizations in the same manner we currently do—whether they are part of the new entity or not.”

Evangelical has long seen a need for a collaborative effort for emergency services in this area.

“The national crisis of staffing ambulances with volunteers is impacting our own region with the consistent core of volunteers aging and new ranks of volunteers not being available to fill the gaps,” said Aucker.

“In order to provide strong, regional emergency services for all people regardless of the time of day and area where individuals live, a new approach has to be taken. We feel ERMMS is the direction we need to move in to best serve the people of our community.”

Initially, the Hospital, through its Pre-Hospital Services department, had been supplying staffing support to various ambulance companies from Middleburg to Watsontown with EMTs and Paramedics. This has been effective in serving short-term needs but a more centralized effort will serve the community’s long-term emergency medical response needs.

Pending the completion of all state licensing, the new ERMMS entity is hoped to be fully operationalized later this year. When it is in place, the department of the Hospital that was formerly known as Pre-Hospital Services will no longer exist and will instead become ERMMS. All staff from that department will move to the new subsidiary.

“We’re excited about this move,” Aucker said. “It is a direct solution to the emergency medical needs of our community and at Evangelical, serving the people who have entrusted us with their care in the best possible way is always our top priority.”