Grey County is on track to restart its community paramedicine program this June. On May 25, Grey County Council approved plans for paramedic services staff to continue offering a modified version of EPIC, the provincially-funded community paramedicine trial that wrapped up in February.
“We’re very excited to see the community paramedicine back in action this summer,” said Grey County Warden Alan Barfoot. “We’ve seen the value this program has added to our community. Patients agree it improves their health and we are confident it has an impact reducing wait times at our local hospital emergency rooms.”
The program will operate in partnership with local family health teams. Chronic disease sufferers are referred into the community paramedicine program by their health care practitioner.
In March, the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care announced that funding for community paramedicine programs across Ontario would be administered by the Local Health Integration Networks (LHINs). Grey County is working with the Southwest LHIN and will receive $254,000 to continue offering community paramedicine services until March 31, 2018.
“It has been great working with the Southwest LHIN and we’re very thankful with their support. Community paramedicine is a treasured service we are proud to offer right here in Grey County,” said Mike Muir, Director of Paramedic Services.
The community paramedicine program will operate with less funding than the EPIC trial. The new program will run 12 hours per day, five days a week, down from seven. Demand is high on weekends so Tuesdays and Thursdays will be the off days for the program.
In addition to the community paramedicine program, Grey County will continue offering Remote Patient Monitoring and the Community Health Assessment Program.
The community paramedicine announcement comes just in time for Paramedic Services Week which runs May 28 to June 3. The theme this year is “Always in Service”. Grey County paramedics have a multiple events planned including a display at Keady Market on May 30 and the Second Chance Reunion Luncheon on May 31. There will also be two “Stuff the Ambulance” food drives held on June 1 with one at Grants Independent in Hanover, and another at Bill’s Valu-Mart in Meaford. Both food drives will begin at 10am.
For more information contact Rob Hatten, Communications Manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 519-372-0219 ext. 1235.