Emergystat files for bankruptcy

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Officials say ambulance service won’t stop

By Victor Inge

The Selma Times-Journal

The parent company of Dallas County’s ambulance service has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, but that won’t stop service.

Emergystat of Sulligent, Inc. filed papers in the Bankruptcy Court of Middle Tennessee earlier this month. However, Dallas County Probate Judge Kim Ballard said Wednesday, he received a call from

a company spokesperson after asking about the &8220;rumor mill&8221; of churned up tales about the company going out of business. The news began to spread.

Chapter 11 bankruptcy lets a debtor maintain control of its business and operations, under court supervision, as long as current debts remain paid.

Court files show the company is owned by Southland Health Services of Vernon. Documents filed with the court by Emergystat shows it has one to 49 creditors and owes anywhere from $1.1 million to $100 million in debt, including the Internal Revenue Service.

But Dennis Poole, Emergystat manager said nothing would change in Dallas, Perry and Lowdnes counties, where the company operates 10 ambulances and employs 49 emergency medical technicians. Six of those ambulances are stationed in Dallas County.

Vaughan Regional Medical Center will award a contract for ambulance services next week. Emergystat is one of the bidders. Care Ambulance Service has the hospital contract now.

The county licenses ambulance services, but does not subsidize Emergystat or Care Ambulance Service. Many years ago, the county paid the Haynes Ambulance Service $1,000 a month to ensure services.

Emergystat and Care Ambulance Service rotate days taking emergency calls.