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Whidbey General’s EMS South opens

Whidbey General Hospital Emergency Services’ south facility, located in Bayview, is nearly ready and open for business. - submitted photo
Whidbey General Hospital Emergency Services’ south facility, located in Bayview, is nearly ready and open for business.
— image credit: submitted photo

Three years after the approval of the 2006 EMS levy, the Whidbey General Hospital Emergency Services south facility, located in Bayview, is nearly ready to open for business.

Two paramedic units will be stationed at the new facility, said paramedic Robert Mays, but there’s room enough for three.

“As the need increases, we’ll be able to expand,” he said.

A crew of two EMTs and two paramedics will staff the new station that will serve the 15,000 people living between Wonn Road in Greenbank and the southernmost tip of Whidbey Island.

The EMTs’ new digs contains a built-in system that will improve ambulance response times. The new technology displays 911 call information on a flat screen panel as it is taken by a dispatcher so the crews can move toward their rigs and be ready to go when they’re dispatched.

Hospital officials chose Bayview as the site for the new facility because it’s more centrally located than the former EMS base in Freeland.

“It was going to cost more to repair and maintain the old facility than it would have been to build a new one,” Mays said.

The South End EMTs and paramedics are excited to move into the new space, Mays said. For the past nine months, they’ve worked out of a rented space east of Freeland.

The new 4,500-square-foot project cost $2.5 million and boasts a number of eco-friendly features, such as renewable and recyclable materials, specially insulated roof, EnergyStar rated appliances, low impact site-design strategies for storm water treatment, and drought-tolerant native plants for landscaping.

Take a tour of the new facility, watch live demonstrations, meet hospital officials and commissioners and enjoy a hot dog barbecue at the Whidbey General Hospital Emergency Medical Services Open House Saturday, Sept. 19, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The ambulance quarters is located at the corner of Highway 525 and Bayview Rd. Park in the Bayview park and ride.

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