MUNISING - County ambulance personnel say equipment and emergency room accommodations have improved greatly over the past year, helping provide for more efficient and comfortable service.
"We're getting two brand new Type 3 ambulances," said Alger County Undersheriff Robert Hughes, who oversees the ambulance service for the county.
The larger ambulances are better equipped for the county's growing ambulance needs. The county recently became an advanced life support capable county service, with nine paramedics now able to perform a wider range of procedures in the field.
Great improvements have been made to the new facility at Munising Memorial Hospital featuring a new emergency room and ambulance garage, seen here. The old ambulance garage could not comfortably hold one ambulance, especially if the doors were open. The new hospital has a much larger garage suited to fit two ambulances in the garage side-by-side. (Journal photo by John Pepin)
In addition to the new ambulances and advanced training designations, there have been great improvements at Munising Memorial Hospital, with the new facility opened there last year featuring a new emergency room and ambulance garage.
Hughes said the old ambulance garage could not comfortably hold one ambulance, especially if the doors were open. The new hospital has a new, much larger, garage suited for emergency vehicles.
"We can fit two ambulances in the garage side-by-side," Hughes said.
The emergency room increased its number of beds from two to five. There are also doctors now continuously staffing the emergency room. Previously, there was a 30-minute response time for doctors.
"They brought in some additional doctors, so pretty much there's always a doctor there," Hughes said.
The new hospital is also arranged more efficiently than the prior structure, which was razed last year. The new hospital was built adjacent to the old one.
"The layout of the hospital is more conducive to them helping each other," Hughes said. "The layout is so much better."
There is also greater availability of necessary items to emergency crews, making the job of keeping ambulances ready with the medicines and supplies a much easier task.
"There's more resources available for us to restock our ambulances right there," Hughes said. "Now, it's much better."