De Pere, Wis. – Today, Wisconsin Department of Administration (DOA) Secretary-designee Kathy Blumenfeld and Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS) Secretary Dawn Crim made a visit to the City of De Pere Fire Department to award a $206,831 grant for the city’s future EMS mobile unit. The stop highlighted the ongoing local recovery and impact of Governor Tony Evers’ overall Badger Bounceback effort.
In May 2022, Governor Tony Evers announced that the City of De Pere would receive a Healthcare Infrastructure Capital Grant, building upon the governor’s announcement during his 2022 State of the State address to invest nearly $30 million into supporting and stabilizing Wisconsin’s EMS system across the state.
“Wisconsin’s EMS providers play a critical role in the health and welfare of Wisconsinites in communities all across our state, but frankly, they’ve been doing more with less for far too long,” said Gov. Evers. “We’re making these investments to ensure every community has the healthcare infrastructure, capacity, and emergency response options to keep Wisconsinites safe, especially in our rural communities, and I look forward to seeing the positive impact De Pere’s new EMS mobile unit will have in serving the folks in Brown County.”
Through the Healthcare Infrastructure Capital Grant program, close to $100 million has been allocated to address healthcare disparities and build up healthcare resilience for more than two dozen communities across the state. The City of De Pere award will be used for the creation of an EMS mobile unit to serve hard-to-reach residents, expand access to preventive services, and extend service hours. De Pere is home to a large population of older adults who rely upon preventative services provided through the Stay at Home Assistance Program, as well as the Syble Hopp School, a school for students with intellectual and other developmental disabilities from across Brown County, ranging in age from 3 to 21.
Secretaries Blumenfeld and Crim met with Fire and Health Department leadership, City of De Pere Mayor Boyd, and local stakeholders.
“The work of first responders never stops, and neither does their commitment to the health and safety of De Pere residents,” said Secretary-designee Blumenfeld. “We’re grateful to be able to honor that commitment by funding an EMS mobile unit in De Pere, which will expand access to care for vulnerable patients, and ensure better outcomes for years to come.”
“Whether our fire service is responding to emergency calls or inspecting buildings, they are the backbone of safety in our communities,” said Secretary Crim. “Investments like these are critical to ensuring the safety of all Wisconsinites.”
“The grant will fund a mobile unit to allow De Pere Health Department and De Pere Fire Department to collaboratively provide services such as mobile vaccination clinics, the Stay-at-Home Assistance Program, COVID and other disease outbreak response, shelter response, community education campaigns, and many other programs for De Pere residents,” said Debbie Armbruster, Health Director/Officer for the City of De Pere. “Currently, these initiatives tie up Fire/EMS critical response vehicles, which can lead to delays in care and emergency response. With the addition of the jointly owned mobile unit, both departments will have an appropriately stocked and ready-to-go vehicle to provide important, non-emergent health and wellbeing services to the community.”
Wisconsinites can visit BadgerBounceback.wi.gov