CORNWALL, Ontario – Cornwall SDG Paramedic Services is launching a new initiative to try and reduce the high demand placed on hospital and ambulance resources during influenza season.
Over the next several weeks, a trained team of Paramedics, in collaboration with the Local Health Integration Network (LHIN), will be providing ‘at home care’ for residents of long-term care facilities in Cornwall and SDG. This initiative will focus on identifying, treating and containing the influenza virus and preventing the number of resident transfers to hospital.
The Paramedic team will begin visiting long-term care facilities this week and the program will run until March 31st. It has been a particularly challenging year for the spread of the influenza virus in Eastern Ontario and this initiative will strive to address that issue.
“The Paramedics who are participating are equipped with the necessary tools to diagnose the flu and to deliver a care plan to treat the specific patient on site,” said Wayne Markell, Health and Safety / Infection Control Officer with Cornwall SDG Paramedic Services. “This will improve the patient experience by not having to be removed from their residence in the winter. We also expect it will help reduce the load on the Paramedic service and hospitals.”
Primary Care Paramedics (PCPs) specially trained in IV and blood draw and Advanced Care Paramedics (ACPs) from Cornwall SDG Paramedic Services were invited to apply for this temporary initiative. The four Paramedics chosen for the program – (pictured above from left) Leigh Wheeler, Alex Sapone, Elisabeth Hill and Trina Boisvenue – have been trained on the influenza virus, its treatments, and how to prevent its transmission to other residents.
Cornwall SDG Paramedic Services is one of three services within the Champlain LHIN region to be launching this new initiative. It is being funded completely by the LHIN.