LAURINBURG — One week is set aside each May to honor Emergency Medical Services workers for the contributions to the communities in which they work.
This year, May 20 to 26 was designated for that purpose. Scotland County Board of Commissioners approved a proclamation earlier in the month to declare the week.
“It’s just a time to recognize all of our work and the good things that they do,” said EMS Director Roylin Hammond.
The county has 15 full time medics — 5 per shift, a training officer, a billing and accounts receivable person, and Hammond who attend to residents’ medical needs and emergencies such as wrecks.
Scotland County EMS treats its paramedics to lunch each year. But this year, Scotland Memorial Hospital and Scotland Health Care System treated county EMS workers and other nearby EMS and rescue squads to a lunch by Rick’s Catering.
“We don’t have a lot of things we can do for our paramedics, but we take them out to eat, and this year that became a little more interesting because the hospital also asked us if they could feed us,” said Hammond. “So they fed us this past Wednesday and, we [EMS] took our paramedics out to eat last week.”
Local EMS workers also take advantage of the week to promote what they do. On Friday, EMS shift supervisors from Scotland County visited EMS Management Consultants of Winston-Salem, the firm handling the billing for the county.
“We usually go up there during EMS Week every year for two reasons,” Hammond said. “The people that work in that office don’t have a clue what EMS does; all they do is billing. So, our people will go up, and they talk about what they do in the field and the issues that they have. Our people get to tour the facility so they understand the importance of dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s.”
Hammond said the trip benefits both parties with regard to, education, their working relationship, and revenue recovery.
President Gerald Ford approved EMS Week in 1974 to support and celebrate EMS personnel and often lifesaving work they do in the country’s communities.
Reach Beth Lawrence 910-506-3169