BENTON COUNTY, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Benton County and Mercy Emergency Medical Services (EMS) announced an agreement on a new contract to continue services to southeastern county residents on Wednesday.
The contract, originally enacted in 2018, encompasses five districts of the following five volunteer fire departments: Beaver Lake, Rocky Branch, Piney Point, Highway 94 East, Hickory Creek and Pleasure Heights. Residents of the unincorporated area of Lowell are also included.
“I’m thrilled we’re continuing our partnership with Mercy. Since the inception of this agreement in 2017, Mercy’s EMS service has resulted in lower response times for Beaver Lake-area residents and lower costs for all of Benton County. That agreement has served as a model for subsequent agreements in other parts of Benton County. Overall, we have more ambulances serving more people than ever before and at a savings to taxpayers over previous service models.”Benton County Judge Barry Moehring
According to a release from the county on Wednesday , the original agreement was signed January 2018, and saved Benton County $816,098.73.
“Mercy is grateful for the opportunity to continue serving the needs of Benton County for EMS coverage in the area,” said Bob Patterson, executive director of Emergency Medical Services for Mercy. “The ongoing collaboration with Benton County, Beaver Lake Fire Department and others has proven very successful and something we are very proud of.”
The new contract will extend services from 2021 to 2023.