Ambulance Service sees increase in COVID-related calls

Staff report

     Monticello Ambulance Administrator Britt Smith released the service activity for the Monticello Ambulance Service for the month of October.

     Total EMS calls for service: 33 (13 to City of Monticello addresses, four to Monticello Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, eight to Jones County addresses within the Monticello service area, five Jones Regional Medical Center transfers, and three to Anamosa city addresses)

     “November has seen an extreme increase in calls due to a spike in COVID-related illnesses,” stated Smith. “Through Nov. 15, we have handled 41 calls for service. We are handling more calls due to an outbreak at the prison.”

     The department’s oldest ambulance, a 2008 Ford E-450, was involved in a motor vehicle accident on Nov. 10 while transporting a patient emergent from the Anamosa State Penitentiary to the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City. The ambulance was rendered disabled. No injuries were reported as a result of the accident. The driver of the second vehicle was cited for failure to yield to an emergency vehicle. Smith said he is working on the insurance claim.

     In the meantime, the Monticello Ambulance Service is borrowing an ambulance from Midland Ambulance Service until the new ambulance arrives, anticipated by Nov. 19.

     “We’ve had a number of our on-call staff members on isolation with COVID-19 exposures and positive tests,” Smith said. “It has put a strain on our service over the last couple of weeks.”


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