Richland County is joining forces with the S.C. National Guard McCrady Training Center to provide emergency medical services to military personnel and Lower Richland residents.
A Richland County Emergency Medical Services (EMS) unit is operating out of the McCrady center’s recently expanded fire station. Combining both fire and medical services in one location was a concept military and County officials recognized would be a great benefit to the community.
“With this partnership, Richland County has the leverage to offer supreme service and greater resources,” said Richland County Councilman Norman Jackson, whose District 11 includes the McCrady center. “This collaboration will improve our fire protection and EMS response for Lower Richland County and our military installations.”
Because the McCrady fire station already serves both the military community at McCrady and Fort Jackson, as well as the surrounding civilian population through cooperative agreements with the Columbia/Richland County fire service, officials said adding the EMS unit was a natural fit.
“McCrady’s fire department maintained Basic Life Support Services, however, this partnership will increase the level of emergency services at McCrady to Advanced Cardiac Life Support,” said Col. Andrew Batten, Director of Construction and Facilities Management Office, S.C. National Guard. “This is a critical improvement of services necessary in providing emergency care of our soldiers, sailors and Marines training at McCrady.”
Batten said he appreciates the support of the community and Richland County Council in making the partnership possible.
“This effort reflects the continued close relationship between the South Carolina National Guard and the communities across the state,” he said.
The Richland County EMS unit moved to the McCrady center last month – less than a year after McCrady celebrated the completion of a major expansion of its fire station.
“Everything is going well,” said Andrew James, chief of the McCrady Fire Department. “I look forward to a great partnership and continuous mutual service to the McCrady and Lower Richland communities.”