Answering the Call

The critics said, it can't be done, but Leon County has proved the critics wrong as it officially takes over ambulance service.

By 10 a.m. Thursday morning, Leon County had received more than 100 emergency calls.

The county says not only has it taken over, but it's made improvements to the system.

Officials say the improvements are in the drastically cut response times, even in the unincorporated areas.

It says it's doing this with more ambulances, a bigger emergency staff, and a lot of planning.

It's official.

Leon County is now in charge of the ambulance service.

Leon county officials say everyone who needs the service will be in good hands.

Not only did the county do what some said was impossible, by taking over the system with about four months notice, the county says it has improved it.

The ambulance coverage area is 657 square miles.

The new Leon County EMS staff has 96 employees along with a bigger fleet of ambulances, 16 in all.

The new EMS chief says it was county leadership that got them this far, but it's the men and women who will answer the calls that will make this new system work.

Officials tell me the response times have been cut because the crews are now in their ambulances ready to go, instead of waiting for calls in a station away from the vehicles.

For the county all 96 jobs are new, plus six more dispatchers for the sheriff's office, but we’re told that many of the new EMT’s were employed by TMH and just transferred over.