According to a report from KMBC, the COVID-19 pandemic has created a situation in the Kansas City, Missouri, metro area where paramedics and similar staff are becoming harder to find.
Raytown Fire Protection District Chief Matt Mace spoke of the flat wages and drastically increased hours that have caused seven RFPD responders to resign, and half of them left the industry.
Raytown has 12 first responders on duty 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Wages are flat. Quarantines and sick co-workers forced many to take extra shifts.
International Association of Fire Fighters Local 42 President Tim Dupin said that city firefighters and paramedics have suffered from burnout because of the increased call volume.
The Kansas City Fire Department lost three members to COVID-19, and many emergency medical services responders stayed away from their families to prevent bringing the virus home from work.
Paramedic schools have reopened so students can now earn the required two-year degree, with many hoping wages will improve.