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State may be investigating county EMS

Although a complaint lodged by now-fired Peabody paramedic Larry Larsen against county EMS director Brandy McCarty appears to have been adjudicated, the county EMS operation appears to be to subject on an ongoing state investigation.

Meeting minutes from the Kansas Board of Emergency Medical Services suggest that after resolving Larsen’s complaint against McCarty, the board may have opened a larger investigation into overall EMS operations in the county.

Meeting minutes describe individuals and services by generic titles only, and board investigator Mark Grayson said there had been instances in which speculation about which case the minutes were referring to had been wrong.

However, a case deliberated in June bears close resemblance to McCarty’s description of her “mistakes” in administering procedures outside the “scope of practice.”

A knowledgeable source who wished to remain anonymous confirmed that McCarty’s case was discussed at the June meeting.

Holub further confirmed that McCarty had been to Topeka for a hearing, but he said he was uncertain as to when.

After describing proposed remedial action (mainly, presenting seminars) that would be required on the part of an EMT who performed procedures outside the “scope of practice,” the minutes go on to state:

“The case against the agency has been tabled and opened for further investigation.

“The Committee asked the investigator to reopen the case as the Chief received a complaint that more AEMT’s were practicing outside the scope of practice by administering medications on transfers that aren’t approved on the medication list.

“The investigator was asked to reopen the investigation on the agency dating back to January 1, 2014.”

The names of individuals investigated and sanctioned by the state EMS board are confidential until a months-long process is completely resolved, Grayson said.

He, therefore, could not reveal whether any pending investigations or sanctions involve any Marion County EMS personnel or the department as a whole.

August board minutes have no entries indicating that any case with similar circumstances or case numbers was resolved. The most recent October minutes were not available as of press time.

County commissioner Dan Holub said he was unaware of any specific cases, and that while he would expect to hear about issues involving the service as a whole, commissioners weren’t directly informed about individual cases.

“That’s an EMS thing; it has nothing to do with the county whatsoever,” Holub said. “I assume we’ll be informed at some time. We’re waiting for the results for the board for all that stuff.”

Last modified Oct. 28, 2015

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