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Chillicothe Times-Bulletin - Chillicothe, IL
  • Rescue 33 on cusp of comeback

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  • If there is a light at the end of the tunnel, Ambulance Rescue 33 may be seeing it.
    “We are going to get our license back shortly,” said Rescue 33 President Ron Hedden after the Chillicothe City Council meeting Monday night.
    Rescue 33 officials shared with the council that they had met with Dr. Cheryl Colbenson, the medical director for the Peoria Area EMS office earlier that day.
    They seemed optimistic about the squad’s future and pleased with the outcome of the meeting, which included an email she sent to City Attorney Mike Seghetti and Mayor Troy Childers Sr. this afternoon.
    In the email, she told them that she had met with Kenny Martin, who is the operations manager for Rescue 33.
    Martin is familiar with the EMS system as he assisted Peoria Heights go from a basic squad to a paramedic service.
    Colbenson wrote that a change for Rescue 33 is for Martin to have “sole responsibility for the management of Rescue 33.”
    Because of the change, she said a new system application and a new business plan would need to be submitted.
    Additionally, she said she would accept a new system application as long as the public is informed about Rescue 33’s level of service, billing of calls and “ensuring a sustainable, qualified, quality EMS service in the future.”
    Hedden thanked the council for its support.
    The squad plans to return as a basic level squad, but is pushing to become a paramedic level, or advanced life support, as soon as possible. Rescue 33 officials said they thought it would be at least six months.
    They first must “prove” themselves as a basic squad, Hedden said, before they can get to the paramedic level.
    Alderman Danny Colwell asked Hedden when they could be making calls. If the squad handed in all of its revised paperwork, Hedden said it would be about 30 days.
    Check back here later for more information or in next week’s edition of the Chillicothe Times-Bulletin.
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