Gordon, task force eye health-care improvements

WYOMING – Gov. Mark Gordon’s Health Task Force and the Wyoming Department of Health are working on ideas for improvements in the health-care sector within Wyoming. One of the collective focuses is on emergency medical services. The Wyoming State Legislature supported proposals brought forward to help stabilize the system and to pilot projects that regionalize the service to reduce costs and provide additional care.

The task force has been engaged in conversations to better understand operations since last year. Regional emergency medical service providers have struggled to sustain operations in recent years due to a combination of factors, including low call volume, high cost of operations, staffing shortages and reimbursement of services.

As a result, Gov. Gordon requested the legislature appropriate $20 million in American Rescue Plan Act funding to stabilize the current system and provide regional pilot programs to address stabilizations. The legislature approved $5 million in stabilization funding and $10 million to develop regional pilot programs.

“One of the key components necessary for Wyoming to have a robust health-care system is to ensure our first responder system is viable and sustainable,” Gov. Gordon said. “IT is essential that emergency services be ready to respond when and where the need arises, whether that be in our most rural areas or in our larger communities.”

In order to move conversations forward and address challenges related to emergency medical services, the task force and WDH will host a series of regional discussions with stakeholders. The first is in Cheyenne. Dates and locations for additional districts will be announced later.