New program bolsters at-home care options for local residents

November 5, 2020   ·   0 Comments

By Alyssa Parkhill

The Hills of Headwaters Collaborative has launched a new program that will allow patients who have tested positive for COVID-19 to access healthcare resources and ensure their needs are met while isolating at home.

The Dufferin-Caledon COVID-19 Remote Patient Monitoring Program will be operated by the Dufferin County Paramedic Services using resources and tools from their Community Paramedic Program. 

The Community Paramedic Program will help to alleviate hospitals’ workload in the emergency departments and clinics, by managing the increase of demand of services.

One patient describes how the new program helps with their healthcare while they remain at home.

“I am actively involved with my care team on a regular basis and my knowledge of my condition is significantly improved. The Community Paramedic checks in on me regularly and provides instructions on how to manage my health,” the individual, who preferred to remain anonymous, stated. 

Funding has been provided for the Dufferin Paramedic team to pay for equipment that will help to help monitor vital signs including blood pressure and oxygen saturation monitors.

“Community paramedicine has, and continues to be, an excellent option to address our lack of community resources, and it plays an important role in developing alternative and innovative ways to meet patient care needs,” said Dr. Karen Sandhu, Physician Champion for the new program. “Remote Patient Monitoring is just one example of how the community paramedics can adapt and provide care utilizing new technologies in an interdisciplinary manner.  The monitoring of medically complex and COVID-19 positive patients will truly benefit the community and improve access to healthcare options.”

Patients remain in the Remote Patient Monitoring Program and receive quality care while at home, until they test negative for the COVID-19 virus, hospital officials say. 

The Hills of Headwaters Collaborative, which includes partnerships with local doctors, physicians, health and municipal agencies, patients, families and caregivers, works to improve the overall health of Dufferin-Caledon residents. With over 30 partners and a long list of physicians and specialists, programs such as the Remote Patient Monitoring Program are able to be introduced. 

With all the added pressure placed on the healthcare system amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the team has “worked endlessly” to cater to all the necessary needs of Dufferin-Caledon residents, according to one of the region’s chief paramedics. 

“The Remote Patient Monitoring Program is yet another example of how our community stands together. We lean on one another; whether it be caregivers helping us develop ideas or healthcare providers ensuring we plan for the best possible outcomes. Our strong history of collaboration has never been more apparent than it is now,” said Tom Reid, Chief, Dufferin County Paramedics.

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