Cheshire EMS startup receives support from federal funds

Federal funds used to buy equipment and supplies and aid training program for emergency personnel in the region
Cheshire County Commissioner Jack Wozmak discusses the new Cheshire County ambulances with U.S. Rep. Annie Kuster, D-NH, in Keene after a roundtable at 21 Bar & Grill in June. During the roundtable, Wozmak highlighted the importance of the ambulances for the new county-run Cheshire EMS. (Photo by Hannah Schroeder, Keene Sentinel)

As Cheshire County plans to launch its own EMS service, federal funds will aid efforts to train emergency personnel in the region, according to a news release from New Hampshire’s congressional delegation.

The county will receive $200,000 with the goal of improving patient care and public safety, U.S. Sens. Maggie Hassan and Jeanne Shaheen, both D-NH, said in the news release Tuesday.

Among other projects, the funds will support the creation of a Cheshire EMS training program that will offer at least 60 hours of training, the release states. The money will also provide emergency-medical-response and emergency-medical-technician training for at least six employees of large businesses, provide initial EMS training to firefighters and help with the purchasing of equipment and supplies, according to the release.

A spokesperson for Hassan did not immediately respond Wednesday to emailed questions about the federal funds.

Last fall, Cheshire County officials announced plans to start an EMS service that would operate as a branch of the county government. At that time, the county proposed purchasing the Keene-based DiLuzio Ambulance Service. While that deal has since fallen through, the county has moved forward with plans to establish its own EMS service.

In late May, the county broke ground on a base of operations for Cheshire EMS in Swanzey after buying the property on Monadnock Highway (Route 12) earlier this year. At the groundbreaking ceremony, the chairman of the Cheshire County Commissioners, Jack Wozmak, told The Sentinel that Cheshire EMS could be operational by September. The ambulance service will employ between 30 and 35 people, Wozmak said at the time.

Wozmak did not return an email request for comment Wednesday. County Administrator Chris Coates also did not return phone and email requests for comment.

Ryan Spencer can be reached at 352-1234, ext. 1412, or Follow him on Twitter at @rspencerKS

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