ARPA Funding to Assist EMT Training for County Recruits



Prowers County is attempting to address the shortfall of EMT responders in each community in the county.  To that end, the Prowers County Commissioners met with Lamar Fire Chief Jeremy Burkhart, Heather Burkhart from the LCC nursing program and Ann-Marie Crampton representing the Lamar Community College Foundation.

The county has access to ARPA Funding, (American Rescue Plan Act) some of which can be used to provide grants or scholarships to students who register to take the college’s EMT-Basic training program, underway evenings now through December for the fall semester.

Enrollment opportunities will focus on current high school seniors from Lamar, Granada, Holly and Wiley who would opt to take the course.  The grant funding would be available for from two to three years under the current general outline.  Commissioner, Tom Grasmick, said the county would need an invoice to determine enrollment levels so show how the $100,000 funding would be spent.

Lamar Fire Chief Burkhart said that following the training through their senior, students must be at least 18 to be placed on the National Registry as an EMT.  Heather Burkhart said that although students from outlying areas could take the course, Lamar Community College is the logical choice for herself and her instructors.

“We haven’t visited any school campus at this time, but have reached out through emails, alerting the schools about the availability of the program,” she explained, adding that she hopes each school would encourage interested students to inquire about what the EMT training requires.

Commissioner Ron Cook suggested the scholarship be opened to those who are out of school, an 18-30 age group, who are local and who would be interested in working as an EMT.

Commissioner, Wendy Buxton-Andrade said a lack of EMTs has placed some communities, such as Holly, in a critical position given their ambulance staff is very small and response times coming from Lamar and now from each community, would be a problem for someone in a health emergency.

Crampton and the Burkharts said they would start to work on developing an interest in the introductory program, get a determination on how many students are interested and report back to the commissioners by the end of September.

By Russ Baldwin

Filed Under: City of GranadaCity of HollyCity of LamarCity of WileyCollegeEducationFeaturedHealthSchool


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