Starting off this weeks news items is an article I found out of Springfield Ohio. It’s from the Springfield News-Sun and this newspaper article is looking at the situation whereby their population has decreased in the city of Springfield Ohio by 4700 residents according the most recent census data in the last 10 years and yet their call volume for their EMS ambulance calls have gone up.
Aging Population Changes Call Volumes
What is the cause of that? I think that, interestingly enough, this is something that is being questioned by a lot of agencies and organizations around the country and I think that this is something you’re going to find in your area as well.
I think with the aging of the population, the average age of the population has increased so that, even in an area where you may have lost residents, it does not matter because the average age of the population in your area has probably increased. As those remaining people in your population of increased in age, they have also increased the numbers of chronic illnesses they’re dealing with.
The number of cardiovascular disease cases you’re going to see is going to rise among other problems and this is part of that whole concept of an aging population putting additional strain on medical resources. I’m sure there’s some things that have to do with increased use of EMS when patients don’t have other healthcare resources, such as the uninsured, that may have something to do with it, too.
Looking for Cost-Effective EMS
In this article, the local officials are looking at the data and they’re scratching their heads because, at a time like this when agencies are looking for ways to cut back to save dollars, looking for ways to reduce the amount of expenditures and having to cut back services, any data that doesn’t go as expected requires a strong look. When you have an increased amount call volume, cutting back services isn’t always something you’re able to do.
What was going on in your area? Are you or your supervisor aware of something like this being looked at in your area? What are the causes that you seem to have identified? I’d love to hear back from you so please send those e-mails into firstname.lastname@example.org and keep the dialogue going. Perhaps we can report back on this, from some of you in a future episode.
Catch this news item and more in this week’s episode of the MedicCast – Atrial Fibrillation Revisited and Episode 295.