SPRINGFIELD, Mo.– Mercy Hospitals said their EMS regional services have been operating at a loss for the past fiscal year.

In a memo sent out to EMT employees, the healthcare system said they’re reaching out to local counties to ask for a potential ambulance district tax to help emergency services continue to serve the area.

Mercy said these losses began when they raised wages for workers.

Some Laclede County residents said if the tax was small, they wouldn’t be opposed.

“It can be life or death to someone,” resident Yvone Tietze said. “If you’re having a heart attack, you’re going to need that immediate attention.”

The full memo sent to employees can be read below:

“It’s extremely important, especially for older people that live alone, they’re going to need somebody there quick if they have problems…” resident Linda Anderton-Sapp said. “It’s just something that is worth paying for.”