11:54 GMT18 January 2021
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    MOSCOW, (Sputnik) - The American Ambulance Association has told the Department of Health and Human Services in a letter that the 911 system nationwide has reached a "breaking point" amid the lack of COVID-19 relief aid from the government, NBC News reported on Wednesday, citing the correspondence.

    "The 911 emergency medical system throughout the United States is at a breaking point. Without additional relief, it seems likely to break, even as we enter the third surge of the virus in the Midwest and the West", the letter read.

    The association noted that the system needs $2.6 billion or about $43,500 for each of some 60,000 ambulances that receive 911 calls.

    The ambulance association is said to have received no help beyond $350 million in April, despite regular requests for support.

    "Compared to what others that we know in the healthcare industry have received, it's a fraction, and it's a fraction of the losses that we've incurred", Hanan Cohen, a paramedic and director of corporate development at Empress Emergency Medical Services in New York, told the channel.

    The US has the world's highest COVID-19 tally and death toll — 13.7 million cases and over 270,000 deaths, respectively.

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