Ambulance house calls

Starting this fall, BC Ambulance Service will not only pick you up from an emergency, it will soon do home checkups in the Bulkley Valley.

Starting this fall, BC Ambulance Service will not only pick you up from an emergency, it will soon do home checkups in the Bulkley Valley.

Houston, Hazelton and Granisle will receive five community paramedics in total around September. The new role aims to help seniors over 65 deal with non-urgent needs such as blood pressure checks, assistance with diabetic care, medication monitoring, and recommending changes to a home to mitigate falling risks.

“Our whole goal is to help keep people at home and out of the hospital system,” said district manager Rick Loucks. “We’re going into the people’s home and seeing how they’re living and what can we do help improve that.”

Hospitals would make requests from BC Ambulance as part of outpatient care.

Houston will have two half-time community paramedics, while Granisle will get one half-time community paramedic. Hazelton will get two.

A call for resumes has closed and BC Ambulance is advancing with the selection process. Training for will start in mid-August in Prince George, before going through a familiarization process.

“We’re going to have to be looking at the needs of each community, which will be different,” said Loucks. “So, a community that has a 24-hour hospital, those needs may be different than a community that has a diagnostic care centre that’s open just during the daytime.”

BC Ambulance requires that applicants be primary care paramedics. Local applicants get priority.

Community paramedics have similar powers to primary care paramedics. They can employ certain drugs and do intravenous therapy, for example, but Loucks said community paramedics would probably not do these procedures unless in an emergency.

Community paramedics could respond to urgent situations too.

The rollout of the community paramedics scheme comes after a trials in Chetwynd, Hazelton and Fraser Lake.

“We’ve been running it for basically one year, trying to work out the bugs and making sure that we know how to build the relationships with the stakeholders we want,” said Loucks.

Smithers will not get any community paramedics at this stage.

“They already have full-time paramedics in the community, and the bigger centres where they have regional hospitals certainly have a lot more services than the remote to rural communities,” said Loucks.


Just Posted

Workers had a busy time today repairing a broken main water line. (District of Houston photo)
Water service being restored

Main line on 13th had broken

Flags at the District of Houston administrative building were lowered last week following the news that the remains of as many as 215 children were found buried on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School. The flags were raised back up yesterday. (Houston Today photo)
Flags lowered in memory

Flags at the District of Houston administrative building were lowered last week… Continue reading

Bruce Tang- Unsplash photo
World Elder Abuse Awareness Day

“Older adults in our communities continue to find themselves in vulnerable situations… Continue reading

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller is seen during a news conference, Wednesday May 19, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Indigenous child-welfare battle heads to court despite calls for Ottawa to drop cases

Feds are poised to argue against two Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings

The Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race has been held in Summerland as a fundraising event. Do you know which Canadian city introduced this sport? (Black Press file photo)
QUIZ: A summer’s day at the water

How much do you know about boats, lakes and water?

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Most Read