Is it possible for Douglas County Ambulance Service to send an emergency patient to Mt. Oread Medical Arts Centre instead of sending him or her to Lawrence Memorial Hospital?
Not at this time, according to Ted McFarlane, director of the ambulance service.
"At this time we consider Mt. Oread to be a physicians' office," McFarlane said. "As such, we don't transport patients in need of emergency services to that facility. If they don't need emergency services, we will transport them there."
However, McFarlane stressed that non-emergency patients who ask to be transported to Mt. Oread are told that some insurance companies don't pay for transportation to a physician's office.
McFarlane said the current policy was developed after meetings between Dr. Laird Ingham, medical director for the ambulance service; Dr. Michael Geist, medical director of Prompt Care, the urgent-care facility at Mt. Oread Medical Arts Centre; and himself.
Factors taken into consideration when developing the policy included that the Mt. Oread facility doesn't offer 24-hour services and it currently doesn't have the capability to admit people for inpatient treatment, McFarlane said.