Patients in Ottawa and Ontario will see enhanced service from local paramedics.
Today I joined Ottawa MPP John Fraser in announcing a change to the Paramedic dispatch system, replacing our current system with one that will better triage patient calls.
This is a new tool for a modern era, where our growing number of older adults requiring medical care, urgent medical calls for crisis and other demands put more pressure than ever on our Paramedic team on the street.
The new system will help us avoid hitting 'level zero', a condition where we have no available paramedic units when a call comes in.
By better classifying patient needs this world class standard and globally used system marks a leap forward in our ability to care for residents.
Better connections to a broader healthcare community.
Today we understand better than ever that paramedic patients could often be best served by connecting them to other community health resources beyond a hospital emergency room.
Together we will expand the scope of our paramedics, allowing them to do more for us themselves, and, make the best referrals possible.
Our Ottawa Paramedic Service has led a successful pilot program focusing on alternate referral options, the first of its kind in Ontario.
Now, we can broaden this work - ensuring if a patient would be better served by an urgent care clinic, a community health agency or mental health support, we can refer and transport them there - saving them time, making care more immediate and effective - all while taking pressure off our emergency room network.
Thank you to all those who helped today become a reality
I’ve been proud to have advocated and worked to bring these changes forward.
I know together we will improve the level of care available to Ottawa residents in their time of emergency.
In addition to thanking the Government of Ontario, Premier Wynne, Minister Hoskins and MPP Fraser – I'd like to thank General Manager and former Paramedic Chief Anthony DiMonte, Acting Paramedic Chief Peter Kelly and the women and men of the Ottawa Paramedic Service.
Every hour of every day our Paramedics are on our streets responding to calls and providing lifesaving care.
In the winter they travel the frozen Rideau canal. In the summer they patrol beaches. They deploy in vehicles, on bikes and on foot. Wherever there are people in our community – our Paramedics are there to provide care.
For a team that does so much for us – we owe them the very best tools to do their jobs, and I believe that’s just what we are giving them here today.