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Malbis emergency room helipad required by law, not expected to be used frequently

The new ER located at Highway 181 and U.S. 90 is quickly becoming a local landmark before it even opens.

Malbis' new free standing ER is sscheduled to pen to the public within the next 90 days.

The new ER located at Highway 181 and U.S. 90 is quickly becoming a local landmark before it even opens.

Kevin Spriggs, president of the Malbis Plantation Historic Homeowner's Association, says at the beginning of the project, not everyone supported it.

Today reviews are still mixed, but in the end, homeowners know it’s the best deal they can get.

"Well, the neighbors are still concerned about traffic with the additional employees. They've expressed concerns about ambulance noise with that, but I pointed out we already have that because everybody that gets ill or sick close by here has to be transported to Fairhope. So, they go by here already," Spriggs said. "If I were sick, five minutes to get across the road versus 30 minutes to get to Fairhope could be the difference between life or death for somebody."

The helipad was discussed in public hearings and the bottom line is the pad is simply required by law. County Commissioner Chris Elliott recalled the public hearings.

"The state has regulations, and there are even federal regulations requiring them to have it," Elliott said. "That's why it's here, but I don’t think what we've talked about it with the infirmary. It will likely not be used very much. The folks that are driving up and down the road seeing the pretty lights over there know the helipad is there but it’s not necessarily something we anticipate being used very much," Elliott said.

Accidents and emergencies will happen and it's likely patients will be airlifted to hospitals in Fairhope or Mobile first.


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