National Paramedic Service Week celebrates new initiative in Fort St. James

National Paramedic Service Week took place from May 22 – 28 in Canada and this year’s theme was enhancing care and changing lives.

  • Wed Jun 1st, 2016 3:00pm
  • News

Barbara Latkowski

Caledonia Courier

National Paramedic Service Week took place from May 22 – 28 in Canada and this year’s theme was enhancing care and changing lives.

And in Fort St. James, changes in the service are improving with two new community paramedics to be hired and the hiring process has already begun.

This comes in light of a recent initiative from the B.C. Government.

​“The Community Paramedicine Initiative is a key component of our plan to improve access to primary health-care services in rural B.C.,” B.C.’s Health Minister, Terry Lake said.

“By building upon the skills and background of paramedics, we are empowering them to expand access to care for people who live in rural and remote communities, helping patients get the care they need closer to home.”

According to Craig Parnell, District Manager of B.C. Emergency Health Services, this is an exciting opportunity for Fort St. James as being on the prototype communities and significant progress has taken place since then.

“The Government has added 73 positions and Fort St. James is busy hiring two new part-time community paramedics. And the Community Paramedic vehicle is already in town,” Parnell said.

According to B.C Emergency Health Services, under this program, paramedics will provide basic health-care services, within their scope of practice, in partnership with local health-care providers. The enhanced role is not intended to replace care provided by health professionals such as nurses, but rather to complement and support the work these important professionals do each day, delivered in non-urgent settings, in patients’ homes or in the community.

This program will have paramedics provide basic health-care services, within their scope of practice, in partnership with local health-care providers. The enhanced role is not intended to replace care provided by health professionals such as nurses, but rather to complement and support the work these important professionals do each day, delivered in non-urgent settings, in patients’ homes or in the community.

“It is all about changing lives and enhancing here. And this is a step in the right direction,” Parnell said.