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— There’s a new kid on the block.

A new advanced life support ambulance will begin operating New Year’s Day in northeast Benton County. Total Life Care EMS Inc.

received its license from the Arkansas Department of Health section of EMS and Trauma Systems.

TLC is new, but the faces behind it aren’t. TLC is the culmination of an eight-year dream for Jeff and Missy Mason of Gateway.

A bright yellow smiley face adorns the top of the TLC ambulance to make it more easily recognizable by air for Air Evac, Missy said.

Helen Huitt, EMS specialist with the state, inspected the ambulance Monday.

“This is a very, very nice ambulance,” Huitt said. “We’re tickled they’re here.”

The ALS ambulance license requires a state-licensed paramedic and emergency medical technician (EMT) be in the ambulance and that the ambulance and all equipment meet state requirements.

ALS-licensed ambulances carry advanced equipment such as a heart monitor, advanced airways, IV supplies and medications.

Jeff showed off a RAD 57, an instrument that reads oxygen saturation levels as well as measuring carbon monoxide levels.

The Masons plan to operate the ambulance primarily as a patient transfer service and will operate out of the former Hurd’s Cabinet Shop at the junction of U.S. Highway 62 and Gann Ridge Road.

The Masons have many years of experience in the emergency medical field. Both formerly worked for a volunteer ambulance service, which Missy’s father, Richard Hurd, helped found.

Jeff was licensed as a paramedic in 2005. Missy Mason was licensed as an EMT in 2003 and completed a 300-hour course for administrative medial specialist, medical coding and billing and has 10 years of experience in medical coding and billing. Jeff has been an American Heart Association CPR Instructor since 1997.

TLC currently employees five people - one paramedic and four EMTs. Call 479-903-4406.

News, Pages 1 on 12/23/2009

Print Headline: New ambulance service in town

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