PORTAGE, Mich. (WOOD) — After nearly half a century, Pride Care Ambulance announced that Friday would be its last day.

“We will be assisting in a transition in any way possible and are working to ensure the safety of the communities moving forward,” Patrick O’Neil, owner, said in a statement.

Pride Care previously provided services to Kalamazoo County and 19 municipalities in four counties, according to its website. In recent months, numerous communities switched from Pride Care to Life EMS or LifeCare Ambulance.

The Cass County Medical Control Authority released a statement in response saying that its 911 services will be covered by a group of local EMS agencies.

“Cass County Dispatch Center and EMS agencies have been preparing for this transition to ensure that our EMS system continues to be ready to respond to all medical emergencies in our communities and countywide. All requests for emergency ambulance service should continue to be made by calling ‘911,’” the medical control authority said in a statement.

In March, Dr. William Fales, who serves as the EMS medical director for Kalamazoo County’s medical control authority, explained the challenges municipalities like Portage face stem from a widespread EMT shortage.

“That translates to difficulty for EMS agencies to staff at the level they would like to staff, and it puts significant demands on the system,” Fales said. “This is not at all unique to Kalamazoo, and frankly, not even to Michigan.”