CLAY COUNTY, Fla. – Clay County is seeing an increase in requests for emergency medical services, Clay County Fire Rescue said Tuesday.
In a Facebook post, Fire Rescue said that during the last week, the county has seen a higher call volume than at any point during the coronavirus pandemic.
“We have utilized our normal mutual aid resources to manage the run volume and are working with our hospital partners to manage the patient surge,” the post reads, in part.
The post comes after Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry tweeted Monday evening that the Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department was helping Clay County Fire Rescue with emergency runs.
“Under mutual aid agreements, our Jax Fire and Rescue is now helping Clay County w emergency runs. Covid related staffing & call volumes there mean we need to help our neighbors. We r all in this together. Please do your part - if ur not already, get vaccinated,” the tweet reads.
Under mutual aid agreements, our Jax Fire and Rescue is now helping Clay County w emergency runs. Covid related staffing & call volumes there mean we need to help our neighbors. We r all in this together. Please do your part - if ur not already, get vaccinated.— Lenny Curry (@lennycurry) July 26, 2021
On average, according to a Clay County spokesperson, Clay County Fire Rescue sees about 70 service calls per day, but a recent uptick has resulted in an average of 90-plus calls daily, with 103 calls received Monday.
“ CCFR has the resources available to respond to calls. The rescues were just taking much longer to drop patients and get back in service. For that reason, we initiated a mutual aid agreement in place with JFRD and were able to use 2 of their rescue units and paramedics for a few hours yesterday. These resources have since returned to Jacksonville,” the spokesperson said. “This is a standard procedure that works both ways, we assist JFRD as needed with response as well.”
The spokesperson also noted that Clay County had 56 firefighters quarantined as of Tuesday, but many crews are returning later this week.
People stopping by Ascension St. Vincent’s Clay County Hospital were expecting to wait when they arrived Tuesday.
“It’s looking pretty busy,” Nick Norris said. “We figured we’d be waiting a few minutes so.”
Orange Park Medical Center told News4Jax: “Like other hospitals in the area, we are experiencing longer than usual wait times. This occurred during the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic and is happening again.”
News4Jax Insiders and members of the News 4 Clay County Facebook group are sounding off.
“Fun times are over folk ,now time to get real ! Cover, vaccines or we will be seeing you in E CARE !” one person wrote.
Another person wrote: “Vaccines have been available in Clay County since February. The fact that in July during a huge surge in infections in Fl, the numbers of Covid cases are rising is the point of this news bulletin.”