CENTRAL TEXAS — Rural America brings a peaceful life in many ways.
"I'm telling you, it was a great hospital with great people," said Milam County resident Judith Matula.
Now the county is without a hospital and down to three ambulances for 25,000 residents.
When Judith's husband was non-responsive she called 911 and found herself in the middle of a healthcare shortage.
"I needed to call an ambulance and around an hour later they finally came," said Matula.
Judith is in her 70s and her husband is in his 80s. The couple had first-hand experience of the Healthcare Crisis in the rural areas of America.
In 2018 Little River Healthcare filed for bankruptcy, which forced the closure of several hospitals, including in Rockdale and Cameron.
Milam County Judge Steve Young says the issue is frustrating.
"It’s a combination of things," Young said. " There's a shortage of paramedics, frankly, they’re not paying the paramedics enough here."
The latest Census data shows the median income for the county is $25,714, with a 16 percent poverty rate.
Twenty-one percent of the population is over the age of 65 -- with the nearest hospital 45 minutes to an hour away.
"Now we are going to Temple and wait to get the patient out of the ambulance into the hospital because of the COVID situation," said Young.
There is a clinic in Rockdale to treat your basic minor health issues.
In Cameron, you can see a Virtual Health Care Specialist that is located at the county jail.
The county judge understands it's not a fix but hopes it helps the community.
Judith Mutla is now finding herself at a spot where she is thinking about moving from the spot that she called home since the 1970s.
"We are America, we make up America, you know all the people that get up and do the best they can," said Mutula.