PRESTONSBURG — No one is talking about the future of Questcare Ambulance service following a recent agreement to take over the business was made Consolidated Health Systems. Whether the transfer signals a new lease on life or a death rattle is not immediately known.
Consolidated Heath Systems, the not-for-profit group which operates Highlands Regional Medical Center, filed its intent to acquire Questcare Nov. 27 with the state Cabinet for Health and Family Services’ certificate of need branch.
Maxana Cook, with Highlands Regional Medical Center declined to comment Tuesday on the action, and would not speak to the specifics of the arrangement, or if CHS plans to opearte or liquidate the ambulance service. Kevin Fairlie with Questcare also could not be reached for comment.
According to the filing, the agreement is supposed to take affect on Jan. 1.
Questcare Ambulance became embroiled in controversy last spring when its license to operate was suspended, following months of investigations into complaints of faulty equipment.
A Kentucky Board of Emergency Medical Services Temporary Suspension Panel determined in June of this year that, due to major deficiencies found system-wide, an Order of Immediate Temporary Suspension would be necessary to protect the public interest.
Violations found with the company’s ambulances included a lack of air conditioning in more than a dozen ambulances, and all but six of its 21 ambulances listed on Questcare’s license were parked due to maintenance issues.