BOISE, Idaho (AP) — A new report from Idaho's Office of Performance Evaluations shows most emergency medical services in the state rely entirely on volunteers and don’t have enough resources to meet the needs of their communities.
The report released Friday found that just 18% of EMS directors reported that their agency is able to maintain sufficient staff. About 65% said they experienced delayed emergency response times because of staffing problems within the last year.
Under state law, emergency medical services aren’t considered essential, so there is no guarantee that every community will have access to ambulances or paramedics in an emergency.
In rural Idaho, nearly 7 out of 10 EMS providers are volunteers.