HORTONVILLE, Wis. (WFRV) – Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers was in Outagamie County on Tuesday with Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) Secretary-designee Karen Timberlake to make a big announcement.

Evers announced that $32 million in emergency medical services Flex Grants have been awarded to 442 EMS providers in nearly every county across the state.

He also announced he is investing an additional $20 million into the EMS Flex Grant Program based on substantial need in communities across the state with the 442 applying EMS providers requesting $63 million in support.

“For years, our local partners have been asked to do more with less, and so many communities have had to cut back on services like public safety across our state. Our EMS providers are often the first on the scene, providing critical care when we need them the most, especially over these past few years, and I know these folks are stretched thin,” said Gov. Evers.

During Evers’ 2022 State of the State address, he announced the state would be providing nearly $30 million to support EMS providers across the state, especially in rural communities.

The $30 million investment included $8 million in one-time supplemental funding for the Funding Assistance Program, which was awarded in August, as well as $12 million for this new one-time, flexible grant program, now known as the EMS Flex Grant Program.

“These grants will provide additional support to more EMS providers, including prioritizing our rural communities to ensure they have adequate emergency response options,” said DHS Secretary-designee Timberlake. “Getting these funds out quickly into the community is a top priority so that people can get emergency medical care when they need it most.”

According to DHS, there are 791 Wisconsin-based EMS providers and over 16,000 licensed providers delivering pre-hospital emergency medical care statewide. Over 450 EMS providers are solely volunteer or operating with a combination of volunteers, part-time, and full-time staff.

For a complete list of EMS Flex Grant awardees, you can click here.