CHARLESTON — The West Virginia EMS Coalition appreciates the continued leadership of Governor Jim Justice in addressing the crisis facing emergency medical services in West Virginia. The announcement by Governor Justice during Wednesday’s COVID briefing that Medicaid rates will be increased 10% to 100% of Medicare for ground ambulance service is a significant step towards stabilizing EMS agencies in West Virginia.
Workforce shortages and inadequate funding are plaquing emergency medical services nationally. But West Virginia is establishing itself as a leader in addressing this crisis. Governor Justice’s EMS initiative launched last week to recruit and educate EMS personnel along with enhanced Medicaid reimbursement rates are providing a roadmap that other states can follow to address the crisis.
The Justice administration has demonstrated a deep understanding of the challenges emergency medical services are facing and has taken unprecedented action to address them. More aid will be needed to strengthen EMS in our most rural communities, but we are confident that solutions will be found based on the growing support that we have received from the Governor and members of the West Virginia Legislature.