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COVID-19 leads to ambulance shortage, Muskogee police taking medics to calls

Posted at 10:40 AM, Jan 12, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-12 19:44:13-05

MUSKOGEE, Okla. — The coronavirus pandemic is affecting the Muskogee Police Department in a new way.

READ MORE: Tracking coronavirus in Oklahoma

Muskogee County EMS told 2 Works for You that police officers are now transporting medics to medical-related calls because of a shortage of ambulance turnaround time.

Muskogee County EMS said they've seen longer times getting vehicles back in service because they sent many out of state to other hospitals for treatment for COVID-19 because of the lack of available beds in Muskogee County.

Trisha German with Muskogee EMS said since the pandemic hit Oklahoma, service time has spiked.

"It’s doubled since April of 2020," German said. " It went from like 39,000 minutes throughout the fleet to 64,000 minutes.”

So, the c=City of Muskogee can up with a solution.

“It’s just basically a plan B,” German said.

Chief of Police for Muskogee, Johnny Teehee said it's about protecting the citizens of Muskogee.

"If we need to help EMS or anything other agency with providing assistance, then we’re going to be there for that," Teehee said.

Although riding in close contact does not provide social distancing, Tehee said safety is still the goal.

“Our officer will wear [a] mask and the EMS will be required to wear [a] mask, Teehee said.

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