image
As you are all aware, we are facing the COVID-19 Pandemic not only globally, but locally. We want the residents of Ripley County to know that we will follow CDC and Missouri Department of Health Guidelines for treating and transporting patients suspected of having the COVID-19 Virus. If you are transported by RCAD you may be asked to wear a mask during the transport and the crew members may be wearing masks, gloves, gown and eye protection. This is to limit the risk of possible spread of the COVID-19 virus. We are also screening all employees at the start of their shift and will also screen any visitors entering our facility. All visitors and staff must maintain physical distancing rules of 6 feet minimum. Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions of concerns.
 
 
image
The District recently hired a new Paramedic, Steve Petty who lives in the Thayer, Mo area and comes to RCAD with over 20 years experience in EMS. Steve has worked at various entities in the region, most recently at Poplar Bluff Regional Medical Center and Medic One Ambulance. We look forward to working with Eric and know he will be a valuable member of our team.
 
 
image
As of August 2019 Dr. Christopher Pinderski, M.D. will serve as the Medical Director of Ripley County Ambulance District. Dr. Pinderski is a fulltime Board Certified Emergency Physician with over 30 years experience and presently works as an ER Physician at Poplar Bluff Regional Medical Center in Poplar Bluff, Mo. While Dr. Pinderski and family, make their home in Poplar Bluff, he is not a stranger to Ripley County as he and his family have owned a cabin and property in Ripley County for many years and spend a lot of time here. We look forward to direction from Dr. Pinderski and welcome him.
 
 
image
The District recently hired in August 2019, Brandon Martinez, a new EMT, who currently lives in the Aquilla, Mo area and comes to RCAD directly after graduating recently from the Emergency Medical Technician Program at Three Rivers College In Poplar Bluff. We look forward to working with Brandon and know he will be a valuable member of our team.
 
 
image

Ripley County Ambulance District is pleased to announce that as of August 2019 the service has become a Training Enitity for EMS Continuing Education and First Responder  All licensed EMTs and paramedics are required to attend continuing education to maintain their Missouri EMS License and RCAD will now be able to offer this program to area providers and our own employees. These classes will be free of charge. In addition, RCAD will also be training to select area fire personnel as First Responders. The Program Director for Continuing Education and First Responder will be Tim Rutledge, EMT-P and Associate Instructor will be Kevin Tidwell, EMT-P. RCAD anticipates that the program will be up and running in Spring 2020.

 
 
image

On Saturday, December 22, 2018, the family of Bill Jenkins was presented a plaque commerating over 20 years of service that Bill Jenkins provided to Ripley County Ambulance District and the residents of Ripley County. Bill served as the Board President and unexpectedly passed away in June of this year. While President,  he worked diligently with the other members to bring noticeable chances to the District. Some of the more significant changes that occured during Bill's leadership, the Ambulance District started operating on it's own in 2007, the entire vehicle fleet was replaced within seven years, going from two units to four. Two additions to the building, one of which included new crew quarters providing adequate living space for ambulance crews that are based here 24 hours a day, wage increases and benefits including health insurance to help the District remain competitive with areas services, updated cardiac monitors allowing us to transmit ECGs to Poplar Bluff before leaving Ripley County, providing potentially faster life saving treatment upon arriving at the destination hospital, motorized stretchers to help alleviate injuries to employees and many other improvements. During this dedication to Bill, the family was also informed that the ambulance building itself would now be known as the Bill Jenkins Memorial EMS Building.

Bill Jenkin's EMS Building
 
 
image

As most of the residents living in Ripley County are aware, the local hospital Southeast Health Ripley County will cease operation on October 15, 2018. While this is an extremely sad day for local citizens, we are told that there continues to be an effort by the hospital’s Board of Directors and Missouri Highlands Health Care to hopefully make this a temporary situation. Ripley County Ambulance District supports all efforts to do so and we will continue to provide the best pre-hospital care possible.

The closing of the emergency department will cause changes in the way we operate. In the past residents that presented to the local emergency department could be transported to other tertiary health facilities including hospitals in Cape Girardeau, St. Louis, Jonesboro, Memphis and Little Rock, etc. Those Hospital to Hospital Transfers will no longer be available with the emergency department closing.

Residents utilizing the District’s ambulances in an emergency, will now have limited choice as to the destination they are transported. Nearest Appropriate facilities to which the Ambulance District will transport patients in emergency situations are Poplar Bluff Regional, Black River Medical in Poplar Bluff Missouri and Five Rivers Medical Center in Pocahontas, Ark. We will not be able to transport any patients to clinics or Urgent Care Centers and have not been able to transport patients to the Urgent Care Center at John J. Pershing VA Medical Center for the past two years.

We are also required to follow certain treatment and transport guidelines with respect to Stroke, STEMI and Trauma Centers. The nearest Stroke and STEMI Center is Poplar Bluff Regional Medical Center and the nearest Trauma Center is St. Francis Medical Center in Cape Girardeau.

When necessary and appropriate we will continue to utilize local Air Ambulance Services. In our area, we have two services, Air Evac Life Team based in Poplar Bluff and Survival Flight located in Pocahontas, Ark. When needed both services, weather permitting, can usually be here in minutes when they are not involved in other emergencies.

In Closing, Ripley County Ambulance District would like to thank all of the physicians, nurses and ancillary staff who made our local hospital a great place for medical care and let them know that the Ambulance District will continue to work hard to achieve the best outcomes for our patients, just as they have for so many years.

 .
 
 
image
As of 07/01/2018 Dr. Gregory Zolkowski, D.O. (Dr. Z) will serve as the Medical Director of Ripley County Ambulance District. Dr. Z is a fulltime emergency physician at S.E. Health of Ripley County, serving several years in that capacity. Dr. Z and his family make their home in Doniphan, Mo. Previously he worked in the Bolivar, Mo area. He received his medical degree from Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine and has been practicing for over 30 years. We look forward to direction from Dr. Z and welcome him.
 
 
image
The District recently hired a new Paramedic, Eric Limbaugh who lives locally and comes to RCAD with over 20 years experience in EMS. Eric is a well known and highly respected Paramedic throughout all of Southeast Missouri having worked for several services in the area, including Shannon County, Poplar Bluff Ambulances Services, West Carter County Ambulance and others. We look forward to working with Eric and know he will be a valuable member of our team.
 
 
image
Timber Berry, EMT-P recently became the newest paramedic working for RCAD. She has worked fulltime for the District since 2015, as an EMT. During the past twelve months she attended the Paramedic Program at Three Rivers College which consisted of hundreds of hours of classroom lecture and laboratory experience. Additionally Timber had to perform clinical experience at area hospitals and ambulance services. Working fulltime and going to school fulltime, while raising her family has been very taxing. Hopefully she finds lots of family time, while the residents of Ripley County also benefit from Timber's increased knowledge and abilities for years to come!