Many people associate paramedics with ambulances. But did you know paramedics are also employed in community roles where they bring important health care services to people who have difficulties accessing care? They also play essential roles in Northern Air Medevac, Saskatchewan Air Ambulance and STARS emergency services.
Medical First Responders provide intermediate life supports in rural areas while waiting for a paramedic team to arrive. Communication Specialists answer 911 calls and often direct callers to provide lifesaving interventions until an ambulance unit or first responder arrives. Paramedics and medical first responders deliver empathy and reassurance as much as life-saving medical care.
COVID-19 has transformed the way healthcare is delivered, both in the community and in our facilities, but one thing that has not changed is that paramedics are most often the first line of defense a medical emergency. Their scope of practice allows them to deliver a number of life-saving medications and procedures before they get to an emergency department. As a result, many Saskatchewan residents owe their lives to this specialized group of health care workers.
As the global community adjusts to this new normal, so do our paramedic teams. New Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) requirements, new patient and household screening methods and alternate ways of delivering standard medical care have all resulted in significant changes to their both their call and medical responses. Like true professionals, they are adapting and maintaining the high level of pre-hospital care that we have come to rely on.
Paramedics Alice Gabriel and Tyson Mulatz.