Harrison County EMS to Move Into 24 Hour Shifts - WBOY.com: Clarksburg, Morgantown: News, Sports, Weather

Harrison County EMS to Move Into 24 Hour Shifts

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CLARKSBURG -

Medical professionals are notorious for working long hours and unconventional shifts.

That's becoming even more of a truth for the Harrison County EMS.

"Paramedics are becoming harder and hard to come by. We're trying to look at a solution that allows you to operate with less personnel but cover the same amount of hours," said Rick Rock, executive Director of the Harrison County EMS.

The Harrison County EMS will be moving out of 12 hour shifts into 24 hour shifts.

"24 hours on, 48 hours off," Rock said.

Rock said it has worked out in other counties, like Kanawha County, but some residents aren't convinced.

"I don't think anyone should work a 24 hour shift especially in an emergency situation. I'm concerned if they are going to be fully with it, if they are tired," said Lisa Lafferty, a resident of Harrison County.

"Our people will have to be mentally and physically prepared. We feel it is safe. And if it isn't then we won't be afraid to change back," Rock said.

All 24 hours won't be spent rushing to an emergency, or caring for a patient. Paramedics go out on four to six calls on an average day.

Rock said there's quite a bit of down time between those calls.

"Amenities of homes. Bunk rooms, T.V.s, recliners," Rock said.

The EMS will transition into that new shift schedule starting in early January.