Weeping Water Nebraska

WEEPING WATER_SIGN

Recently some lumber and plastic were found in the city's brush site.  Please remember that the site in only for leaves, grass clippings and branches.  You will now need to go to the city office and sign out a key in order to drop off anything at the brush site.

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Coming Home for the Holidays is scheduled for Saturday, December 6th. 

Santa

Elf on_a_Shelf

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Escalating Costs Putting Strain on rural EMS Services

Rising equipment costs, advances in technology and lack of funding are just a few of the financial challenges facing rural ambulance services making it difficult for many ambulance services to stay afloat.

There are many misconceptions about how rural ambulance services receive funding and compensation for their services.

For many years, much of the rural EMS system has relied on donations and fundraising to support their ambulance service.  But those dollars are no longer enough to pay for the increasing costs associated with running an ambulance service.

The fixed costs required to operate an ambulance service are numerous and they continue to escalate.  Plus, rural EMS agencies have the additional probelm of dealing with the same fixed costs as busier urban EMS services but operate with much lower volumes, and therefore, less income to pay for these expenses.

One of the largest expenses is equipment and supplies.  Consider this, an ambulance vehicle can cost between $125,000 and $225,000.  And that doesn't include the costs associated with equipping it with medical equipment, gas and expenses related to maintaining the equipment, repairs and replacement.

EMS squads cannot pick and choose which types of medical equipment they are going to use and purchase.  Much of their equipment is required and federally regulated and varies depending on whether they are equipping a basic life support (BLS) ambulance or an advanced life support (ALS) ambulance.

Equipment required for a basic life support ambulance includes ventilation and airway equipment, automatic defibrillator devices, stair chair and cot, immobilization devices, bandages, communication devices, obstetrical kits, stretchers, cots, infection control equipment, injury prevention equipment and many other miscellaneous supplies.  Equipping and supplying a BLS ambulance typically costs $40,000-$50,000.

Along with items listed avobe, an advanced life support squad is even more costly.  These costs are for items like specialized vascular access equipment, intravenous infusion pumps, cardiac devices like 12-lead ECG, electrical cardioversion, transcutaneous cardiac pacemaker and other advanced equipment like CPAP, enhanced ventilators, point-of-care lab testing etc.  This creates an addition expense of $40,000-$50,000 or more on top of those listed above.

Keeping up with the latest medical technology is often cost prohibitive for rural EMS services.  But, even with a modestly equipped ambulance, the average cost for the vehicle, equipment, and supplies easily approaches or exceeds $250,000.

Most EMS squads also have a station they must lease and maintain.  Workers compensation is another increasing expense in a filed considered by the insurers as high risk.  The number of underinsured and those on Medicare and Medicaid also continues to go up, making it more difficult to get fair compensation.  The amount that Medicare and Medicaid reimburses often doesn't cover direct expenses, and in many cases, doesn't help pay for the salaries of paid workers.  As a result, each ambulance service must adjust their rates to help compensate for these additional expenses.

Then there is the money needed to invest in education and on-going training.  The expectations placed on volunteer EMTs and paramedics are greater today than ever before.  As medical technology has advanced, the level of care provided by emergency services has also increased and that requires regorous education and on-going training.

The minimum training to become an EMT is usually around 180 hours and is typically done over four to six months with an investment of approximately $1,500 - an expense that often comes out of the volunteer's own pocket.

Training to become a paramedic is even more rigorous and may cost in the range of $10,000 to $15,000.  There are additional, on-going costs associated with continuing education in order to maintain one's certification.

So the next time you receive a bill for services rendered by your local ambulance service, remember what it takes to keep this service operating.  And in many instances, the EMT who came to your assistance, was probably a volunteer recives little or nothing for his or her time and service.  Instead of complaining, be thankful that you still have a EMS squad operating in your town that can potentially save the life of you or a loved one.

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Senior meals are available at the Hopper Community Center, 101 W Eldora Ave., Suite 3, on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.  Call Ruth Vogt at 402-267-5303 to order a meal or schedule a delivery.

UPCOMING MENU - subject to change

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

vegetable soup

1/2 hogie sandwich

deviled egg

watergate salad

applesauce bar

Friday, November 21, 2014

turkey-dressing

mash potatoes & gravy

green beans

jello

pumpkin pie

Monday, November 24, 2014

goulash

green beans

lettuce salad

cookie

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

ham & beans

cornbread

deviled egg

jello

pumpkin bar

Friday, November 28, 2014

center closed

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Sattery Dec_2014_events

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Murray 4th of July Celebration Planning

Election of the 2014-15 officers for Murray's 4th of July Planning Committee was held November 6, 2014 and the unanimous results are:

President - Jack Prall

Vice President #1 - John Hensch

vice President #2 - Craig Brunotte

Secretary - George (Geo) Blessing Jr.

Treasurer - Sandy Prall

We are excitedly gathering more ideas to keep moving onward and upward in our annual tradition!

Mark your calendars for the next meeting which will be held on

Thursday, December 11, 2014

6:30pm

Murray Town Hall

Everyone's welcome!  We'd be very interested in hearing your ideas!

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Operation Christmas

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Cold Weather_Safety

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Advent Service_schedule_2014

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Night in_Bethlehem_Flyer_2014-2

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WoodhouseThankyou

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Holiday Extravaganza_Schedule

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nativity flyer1

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Cass County_Fair_2015

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RCL Sunday_SkatingParade of_Homes_2