AUGUSTA – Senate President Troy Jackson, D-Allagash, was recognized by Maine Ambulance Association at the Atlantic Partners EMS Conference on Saturday for his role in securing critical funding for Maine’s ambulance services in the Legislature this year.
“Emergency medical services are essential to the vitality and success of our communities. The men and women who jump into action at a moment’s notice to rescue us in our darkest hours shouldn’t have to worry about whether or not they can afford to answer the call. They should be able to focus on saving lives,” said Pres. Jackson. “I’m proud to have stood side-by-side with emergency medical professionals to secure this funding. It was long overdue.”
Pres. Jackson’s original proposal – LD 915, “An Act To Provide Adequate Reimbursement under MaineCare for Ambulance and Neonatal Transport Services” – was funded by the Legislature and signed into law by Gov. Janet Mills on July 2. This funding comes at a time when rural ambulance services are struggling to stay operational in communities across the state. Ambulance services have already shut down operations in Ellsworth and West Paris. By increasing the reimbursement rate from 65 percent of the Medicare rate to the average allowable Medicare rate, Pres. Jackson’s proposal will help stabilize ambulance and neonatal transport services for all Mainers.
“For me, it’s pretty simple. I believe that all Mainers should be able to call 9-1-1 and get help in an emergency no matter where they live,” said Pres. Jackson. “With this legislation, we can make sure more Mainers have access to emergency medical services. But make no mistake, our work is not over.”