Palo Pinto Emergency Services District 1 and Palo Pinto County Hospital District broke ground on the Possum Kingdom East Ambulance Station and Medical Clinic Wednesday afternoon.

The 8,000-square foot facility will have ambulance staff stationed 24/7 and outpatient medical services to residents of the lake and nearby communities.

“We felt the need to locate an ambulance facility here with the ever-growing population on this side of the lake just to provide a faster response,” ESD 1 Board President Tye Jackson said. “People that come from the city are used to having a three-minute fire truck and ambulance response and when they come to rural areas, they still expect that.”

The Palo Pinto County commissioners court allocated more than $200,000 of the county’s EMS funding to help ESD 1 move forward with the project.

“We’re thrilled that ESD 1, the hospital district and the county are cooperating to get this facility out here,” County Judge Shane Long said. “I love to see different taxing entities come together to co-op instead of doing all of this individually — working together. It’s a tremendous project and I’m very excited about the facility.”

ESD 1 provides fire protection and EMS services to all of Palo Pinto County with the exception of the city of Mineral Wells and EMS services in the southeast corner of the county, which is covered by ESD 2.

“What’s particularly important about it is the partnership between the hospital and the emergency services district. As medical services advance, we’re getting more into the idea of trying to eliminate emergency room visits and ambulance calls so if you can do some community health stuff — blood pressure clinics, screenings — you can improve the health of the community,” ESD 1 Board Treasurer and ESD 2 Assistant Treasurer Ken Backes said. “It’s just natural when you have a clinic and ambulance co-located, they’ll be able to help each other go out into the community. I think that’s the most gratifying thing to me. This is a start and the hospital district has been super working with us.”

The Possum Kingdom East Ambulance Station and Medical Clinic will be located at the intersection of Farm-to-Market Road 2353 and Park Road 36, just south of Graham Savings and Loan. The facility is being built by Teinert Construction.

“I think this is a great way to improve healthcare to our community and our county and to a part that needed that service,” Palo Pinto General Hospital CEO Ross Korkmas said. “We’re excited to have an ambulance service out here, we’re excited to put a clinic out here, and just really excited about the partnership and doing good work for the people of Palo Pinto County and the surrounding area.”

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