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Weyshawn Koons: Please vote yes for San Juan EMS levy renewal

  • Written by Weyshawn Koons

Please vote Yes to renew the Public Hospital District’s EMS Levy!

San Juan Island EMS has been serving our community for 45 years. When you call 911 we are the only service responding with paramedics who provide advanced life support care. Our paramedics have a combined 87 years of experience. They know the island and many of our residents well. The station is staffed 24/7 by well-trained EMTs who roll the ambulance and provide basic life support with an expanded scope of practice.

Every six years we ask the voters to renew our EMS Levy. This levy allows for no out of pocket costs for residents of our taxing district and provides a wealth of services. San Juan County has the best rural cardiac save rate in the nation. Our Falls Prevention Program has decreased falls in our district from 18% to now 11%. This service runs through our Community Paramedicine Program, which helps many of our elderly patients stay in their homes.

Every three years San Juan Island EMS puts on the Every 15 Minute Program in hopes of helping students make good life choices by not driving or riding in a vehicle with someone impaired. It is a mountain of work culminating in a mock motor vehicle crash on the high school athletic field and allows students to experience that type of tragedy without suffering real-life consequences. We have a Kids Don’t Float Lifejacket Program and offer sport helmets, bike helmets and car seats for needy families, all funded by grants written by Laney Volk. Our American Heart Association Instructors teach First Aid, CPR and AED classes and we have SOLO instructors who teach Wilderness First Aid.

The prevention programs and classes taught are links in the chain of survival. These services don’t just happen. It takes forethought, planning and engaged participants striving for excellence. It takes oversight by our Medical Program Director Dr. Corsa, who updated our protocols and formulary this year and helped us purchase handheld ultrasound devices for use in the field.

We have a new EMT class underway with eleven students who will be ready to respond to their friends and neighbors and community this summer. I have never been prouder of our staff and volunteers and Support Officers. Please vote Yes for the Public Hospital District’s EMS Levy!

Weyshawn Koons

Director of Emergency Response

Training Officer, Senior EMT Instructor, Critical Care Paramedic

San Juan Island EMS