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Ornge land ambulance base at Chatham-Kent EMS could become permanent

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Ornge, Ontario’s provider of air ambulances and related services, is extending its temporary critical-care land ambulance base at Chatham-Kent EMS until March 2021. The announcement comes as Ornge looks to increase its resources in the region, especially as it accelerates its response to COVID-19.

As Chatham-Kent EMS General Manager Donald MacLellan said in an interview with the Chatham-Daily News: “Overall, from a partnership perspective, having the Ornge team in our headquarters, temporarily, has helped build relationships. As a service, we have certainly seen the benefit, because historically those land transports would have been assigned to a Chatham-Kent EMS unit.”

The Ornge critical care land ambulance system allows for patients to be safely transported by specialized critical care paramedics, without the need to bring along doctors, nurses or reparatory therapists from the hospital. Its success in dealing with increased call volumes, increasing capacity for its fleet of air ambulances and meeting the demands of COVID-19 has the Ornge leadership team and health officials looking ahead beyond next March and considering making the Chatham-Kent base permanent.

Canadian Paramedic Memorial Bell visits MHS operations in Ontario

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Each year, paramedics take the time to remember colleagues they’ve lost in the line of duty. While COVID limited their ability to gather, this year was no exception as the Canadian Paramedic Memorial Bell visited ambulance operations across Ontario, including stops at Chatham-Kent EMS and Perth County Paramedic Services.

Built in 2015, the Canadian Paramedic Memorial Bell was designed by Ottawa paramedic Michael Dunlop to honour paramedics who have died in the line of duty. The bell is housed in Ottawa and the fallen are normally remembered during a large ceremony each year. However, with this year’s COVID restrictions, the organizers of The Paramedic Ride – a not-for-profit organization that’s raising money for a paramedic memorial monument in Ottawa – arranged to have the bell travel across Ontario, visiting all 52 land and air ambulances services in the province.

In June, the Canadian Paramedic Memorial Bell visited Chatham-Kent EMS, where the names of the fallen were read during a bell-ringing ceremony. A similar ceremony took place in early September in Perth County, where Perth County Paramedic Services paramedics gathered with local officials.

“From coast to coast across Canada, paramedics remain ever ready to respond to the needs of our communities,” said Perth County Paramedic Services Chief Mike Adair during the ceremony. “Paramedics choose their career but it’s far more than that. I believe it’s a true vocation. They live for the calls they face, sometimes with adversity that comes with both the physical and psychological challenges that can stay with them throughout their careers. It’s perhaps because of this that paramedics are masters of learning and working together.”

Celebrating Pride in 2020

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Teams across Medavie have been actively supporting Pride for a number of years. And, while the events might have looked different in light of COVID-19, this year was no exception.

Celebrations began in June with our team at Medavie Health Services West, where a Pride flag was flown and paramedics showed their support by wearing rainbow-emblazoned uniforms.

EHS also took to social media and proudly shared a photo of an ambulance decorated in celebration of Pride, while employees from TeleHealth and the Medical Communications Centre showed their support with flags and pride colours.

At Island EMS, crews around the Island received special Pride themed treats and decorated an ambulance.

In Ontario, our Operations supported Pride with various social media messages and other local activity.

Corporately, in addition to lighting up our Moncton office with all the colours of the rainbow flag, Medavie also contributed a total of $75,000 to organizations that provide health resources and supports to LGBTQ2+ youth.

Be sure to check out the collage below for photos from social media of Operations participating in Pride celebrations. Thank you for all that you do and happy Pride 2020!

A Message from Erik Sande

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In the following video, Erik Sande, President of Medavie Health Services, provides a reflection of the year to-date and reviews some of the amazing achievements from across our Operations.

Jim Christie retires from Chatham-Kent EMS

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After 46 years of service, dedication and leadership to the EMS community and paramedic profession, Chatham-Kent EMS Operations Manager Jim Christie has announced his plans to retire on July 29, 2020.

Throughout Jim’s career, he has served as a frontline paramedic and leader in the Hamilton, Halton-Mississauga, London and Chatham-Kent area. He has also been instrumental in impacting many operational portfolios and building positive working relationships with Chatham-Kent’s community agencies, partners and the local union leadership. Given his many accomplishments and passion for paramedicine, we feel honoured to have had him as part of our Medavie Health Services family.

Congratulations Jim – we wish you a very healthy and happy retirement!

Paramedics to provide support during COVID-19 to Canada’s Indigenous communities

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Over the past few months, Medavie Health Services paramedics and frontline teams have been working tirelessly in the fight against COVID-19 – from performing regular duties while under extreme pressures to helping keep non-urgent cases out of the hospital to conducting testing in local communities and at provincial borders. These efforts have not gone unnoticed and we are pleased to announce that Medavie Health Services has received a contract to provide primary, public and emergency health services to a number of Canada’s remote Indigenous communities as they continue to battle this pandemic.

Through our newly-received three-month contract, with a possible three-month extension, paramedics will be engaged to provide a surge capacity response to remote Indigenous communities in northern Ontario, Manitoba and Saskatchewan. Just as our paramedics do back home, they will provide direct patient care and consultation, and assist with local health care programs. Most importantly, they will work alongside other health care professionals in these communities, including First Nations and Inuit Health Branch-employed nurses, ensuring that nursing stations and health centres can continue to provide life-saving care to their communities.

In addition to this contract being a strong endorsement of our capabilities, it also presents a rare opportunity for our paramedics to utilize their professional skills in locations they might otherwise never visit, let alone work in. Primary Care and Advanced Care Paramedics will be deployed in two to four week shifts and will work with Registered Nurses and Nurse Practitioners to respond to urgent community health care needs and medical emergencies when they arise.

This is an exciting opportunity, both for Medavie Health Services and the paramedics who will be part of it and we’re looking forward to their experiences and successes over the coming months.

Source: https://www.canada.ca/en/indigenous-services-canada.html

Now accepting applications for the Medavie Scholarship!

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The Medavie Scholarship program is now accepting applications from young adults whose lives have been touched by mental health, and who are pursuing a related health post-secondary program. It’s part of Medavie’s commitment to improving the wellbeing of Canadians.  Do you know a student who meets these criteria?  To apply and check eligibility, please visit the Medavie website. Applications are accepted until July 31.

Medavie Teams up with Jack.org to Support Youth Mental Health

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COVID-19 is having an unprecedented impact on youth mental health, especially for those who are vulnerable, navigating unemployment or homeless. Recognizing the increased need for appropriate youth mental health education and resources during these trying times, Medavie, through our Foundation, is providing a $200K matched funding donation to Jack.org, the only Canadian charity training and empowering youth across our country to revolutionize mental health.

This funding will support Jack.org’s work in reaching more young people through digital education including resources like Be There, which recently won a Webby award for the top health website in the world. 

Join us if you can, in supporting an organization that is working around the clock to make sure our young people have the supports and community they need, now and going forward, in living their best lives.  And with Medavie matching all donations up to $200K, donate now and double your impact at www.jack.org/medavie.

Should you wish to find a Jack chapter in your area, click here.

Read the media release here.

Together with Jack.org, we are accelerating digital innovation and improving the wellbeing of Canadians.

Feeling overwhelmed? BEACON can help

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Have you taken a moment to really check in with yourself lately?  Managing new routines created by the pandemic isn’t easy. If you’d like to learn ways to help you cope with your new norm, BEACON can help.

BEACON is a completely digital therapy program that you complete on your own time, at your own pace. Check out this video to learn more:

Through Medavie, all employees and their families (16+) now have access to BEACON. Visit www.mindbeacon.com/bmh347 to learn more.

A message of thanks from MHS President Erik Sande

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As the COVID-19 pandemic unfolds across the country, Medavie Health Services employees are working tirelessly to ensure the safety of their patients and communities. In the video below, Erik Sande, President of MHS, takes a moment to thank you for your selfless efforts during this difficult time and explains how MHS is working behind the scenes to support our employees in every way possible. Every day, you are heroes to countless Canadians – and we couldn’t be more proud of you.