Patients receive a vast amount of information while being discharged from the hospital. All of this information is difficult to retain under any circumstances and the retention is diminished further with limited support, stress, and severity or complexity of diagnosis. This limited retention and support correlates with hospital readmissions. The goal of the Community Paramedicine Program is to offer increased support, care, and education; decreasing readmission rates and assisting the patient to maintain optimal health.
Through the program, community paramedics complete home visits to help bridge the gap between hospital discharge and patient follow-up appointments. The paramedics perform a physical assessment, collect vitals, and complete a home safety assessment. Paramedics provide medication reconciliation. It is imperative that patients are taking new medications correctly. Waiting until a follow-up appointment may be too late to correct damage done by patient’s improper medication management. Education is provided on chronic illnesses and diseases. Being educated on a patient’s diagnosis, empowers them to make the best decisions toward effective management. Paramedics evaluate any new concerns that the patient may have acquired since returning home, and refer and coordinate the patient with community resources as needed.
The paramedic can act as a liaison and advocate between the patient and their provider. Any concerns voiced the paramedic or concerns noted through assessment can be brought to the provider’s attention promptly, decreasing the risks of future or further damage or injury. Follow-up visits are evaluated and it is ensured that the patient is properly scheduled with their provider to continue their recovery and maintain their health.
Community paramedics primarily support patient’s dealing with a diagnosis of COPD, CHF, sepsis, and other high risk readmit comorbidities. With a provider order, paramedics can administer IV diuretics in the comfort of the patient's home for CHF patients.
Programs are currently in Dauphin, Cumberland, Perry Counties, and Hanover & York Regions at this time, however our reach is rapidly expanding.
The Community Paramedicine program aims to bring evaluation and education into the patient’s home; keeping them on track toward their best health in their recovery.
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