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Your mental health matters – use BEACON for support when you need it


This year has certainly brought forward new challenges and obstacles to overcome. As we enter into the holiday season, which can be an especially difficult part of the year for some, we encourage you to take care of your mental health and use the free services that are available to you.

Through Medavie, all employees and their families (16+) have access to BEACON – including full-time, part-time, term, casual, union and non-union staff.

BEACON is a digital cognitive behavioural therapy resource to support mental health and is offered in both French and English.

Once you sign up with BEACON, you will complete a personal assessment that will help ensure that BEACON therapy is compatible with your needs.

Your use of BEACON is entirely confidential. Don’t be afraid to reach out for support – you and your mental health matters and BEACON can help.

HealthEd students participate in blood drive clinic and toy drive in their community


Earlier this month, students from Medavie HealthEd’s Tracadie, NB Primary Care Paramedic program took part in both a blood donation clinic and a Christmas toy drive.

It’s a great example of how so many of Medavie Health Services’ employees and even our students give back to their communities!

HealthEd began offering a French-language Primary Care Paramedic program in Tracadie-Sheila, NB in 2019, after recognizing the demand for a new paramedic education program on the Acadian Peninsula. By providing a French language option in Tracadie, the program opens up opportunities to a large population of New Brunswickers without them having to travel to Moncton.

EHS Operations receives vehicles for non-clinical patient transfer from Nova Scotia Government


As part of a one-year pilot project called the Medical Transport Service, the Government of Nova Scotia has purchased three vans for EHS Operations to use for non-clinical patient transfers. The goal of the program is to free up paramedics and ambulances so they can respond to emergencies and traumas.

Currently, EHS Operations provides non-clinical, non-emergency transportation by EHS ambulances with two paramedics. This new program will help alleviate pressure on the emergency health system in Nova Scotia and free up services from non-emergent tasks.

Scheduled to start in February 2021, the service will be staffed by EHS employees who will be in communication with the EHS Medical Communication Centre. 

This program will provide service to Kentville, Bridgewater and HRM and will be able to transport several people at a time.

Keeping Canadians Safe With the COVID Alert App


Here’s a safe and simple way you can help improve the wellbeing of Canadians

Throughout the pandemic, Medavie Health Services employees have been working tirelessly to keep our patients and communities safe. Everyone has stepped up to answer the call for care, where and when it’s needed. Thank you for all you have done – and continue to do – to improve the wellbeing of Canadians.

Your role on the frontline has never been more important. That is why we are encouraging all MHS employees to download and install the Government of Canada’s COVID Alert app on your work and personal phones. By doing so, we’ll be helping to protect the health and safety not just of those around us but our families and communities as well.

How the app works

The COVID Alert app anonymously tracks close contact with others who are also running the app. If someone you’ve come in close contact with later tests positive for COVID-19, they will receive a one-time key from their local health authority to enter into the app. The app will then notify you of the potential exposure and provide guidance from your local health authority on what to do next.

Your privacy is protected

While the app does track close contacts, it’s important to understand that it does not collect personally identifiable information. It has no way of knowing your location, name or address, the place or time you were near someone, or your health information. And if you are diagnosed with COVID-19, the app will explicitly ask for your consent to share a random key on your phone – it is up to you whether you share that key or not.

How to install the app

You can download the COVID Alert app for free from both the App Store and Google Play. It should work on any smartphone released in the last five years, including iPhone 6S or newer (running iOS 13.5 or newer) and Android devices running Android version 6 or newer. Once installed on your phone, the small app runs quietly in the background, using Bluetooth to anonymously exchange random codes with other phones running the app. By installing and running the COVID Alert app, we can ensure we are helping to limit the spread of infection and prevent future outbreaks. You can learn more the app and the Government of Canada’s coronavirus response at  

Emergency Health Services loans AEDs to Royal Canadian Legion branches across Nova Scotia


Over the next few weeks, 38 Royal Canadian Legion (RCL) branches across Nova Scotia will receive life-saving gifts in the form of Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs). They will receive these AEDs through a four-year loaner program made possible by Emergency Health Service (EHS).

EHS is sharing AEDs that were previously assigned to EHS Medical First Responder agencies, as they have upgraded to newer models.

Mike Janczyszyn, EHS AED Registry Coordinator and Ian Kennedy, Community Relations Paramedic, have been supporting this government initiative by collecting and distributing the AEDS to the various legions across the province.

While older, the AEDs that are being loaned to RCL branches are functional and safe and will provide a life-saving opportunity in the event of an emergency. Each AED being donated has been outfitted with new batteries and pads to ensure their effectiveness.

Along with calling 9-1-1 and performing CPR, the use of an AED greatly improves the chances of a positive outcome in cases of sudden cardiac arrest.

Doug Cormier, president of Amherst Legion Br. 10 accepts the AED from EHS Community Relations paramedic Ian Kennedy.

Paula Poirier presented with national award by the Trauma Association of Canada


On November 20, 2020, the Trauma Association of Canada (TAC) virtually announced Paula Poirier, Chief Operating Officer, Emergency Medical Care (EMC) as the 2020 recipient for its Dr. Charles Burns Board Recognition Award.

This significant recognition was created to honour the visionary leadership of Dr. Burns, who was the first President of the TAC. The award is presented to a physician or other health care professional who has been a past member of the TAC and continuously demonstrates outstanding leadership, endless passion, a spirit of volunteerism and who is considered a visionary and innovator in the field of trauma by their colleagues.

“We are very fortunate to have Paula as part of our leadership team,” said Erik Sande, President of Medavie Health Services. “At Medavie, our core mission is to improve the wellbeing of Canadians. Paula’s energy, clinical expertise and commitment to our communities – especially through the COVID-19 pandemic – have advanced that mission and helped transform the delivery of trauma and emergency services.”

With nearly two decades of experience in emergency health services and the first non-physician selected to be President of TAC, Paula currently leads the day to day operations of EHS Operations, 811 Telecare and strategic long-term planning initiatives.  

“I am deeply honoured to receive this award,” said Paula. “The fact that it comes from my peers and colleagues at TAC makes it very special and I will continue to focus on collaboration with them and with the communities we serve to drive innovation.”

Congratulations, Paula on this well-deserved recognition!

MHS West celebrates the end of Movember


Every year, men around the world forgo shaving their upper lip to grow a moustache in recognition of Movember. This annual event raises awareness and funds to make a difference in men’s health, including mental health, suicide prevention, and prostate and testicular cancers.

While paramedics across our operations participated in this fun event to show their support, MHS West paramedics celebrated the end of Movember by having an on-air moustache shave-off!

Click on the photo below to be linked to a video of MHS West paramedics shaving their Movember moustaches. Please note the video is only available in English.

Paramedics answer the call for healthcare


In a recent opinion editorial published by SunMedia newspapers across Canada, Erik Sande, President of Medavie Health Services, explains how community paramedicine can modernize long-term care in Ontario, increase capacity within our health care system and reduce hallway medicine.

The article follows significant investments recently announced by the Ontario government to allow the expansion of existing community paramedicine programs and create opportunity for new programs.

Filling the gaps
“Community paramedicine is an important example of how we can help fill existing gaps in care and bring healthcare right to our patients, where and when they need it most,” Sande writes.

He points out that these programs are already well-established in regions across Ontario, operate as part of an integrated, team approach to care and have measurable outcomes.

Cutting admissions in half
“Our latest data shows 911 calls for targeted complex patients in Chatham-Kent have dropped more than 80 per cent and admissions to local emergency departments have been cut in half.”

Sande adds that MHS “paramedics are also actively supporting their communities’ COVID-19 efforts through mobile drive-thru testing clinics and testing in long-term care homes.”

Read the full article, as it appeared in the Toronto Sun, here.

Pick-up of the article includes: Sudbury Star, Woodstock Sentinel Review, St. Thomas Times-Journal, High River Times, Chatham Daily News and more!

Canadian Patient Safety Week 2020


Every year, Medavie Health Services celebrates Canadian Patient Safety Week by recognizing employees who have gone above and beyond in their commitment to patient safety. However, this has been a year like no other. As we continue to deal with the challenges of COVID-19, it’s clear that everyone across Medavie Health Services has been going above and beyond in their commitment to keeping our patients and communities safe.

That is why we are highlighting the patient safety efforts of all our employees on our MHS Facebook page between October 26-30th. More than ever, we want to show how employees across our organization have made patient safety a priority. We’re incredibly proud to call each of you our 2020 Patient Safety Champions!

Medavie’s 2020 Employee Giving United Way Campaign


We are excited to announce that this year, Medavie will be launching an employee giving United Way campaign with participation from each of our business locations. Starting October 28, 2020, all Medavie employees will be able to contribute to the United Way with payroll deductions. Together, we will also have the chance to double our impact as the Medavie Health Foundation will be matching all payroll deductions up to $200,000.

The United Way partners with community organizations to ensure that your donations stay local and make the greatest impact. For those who are able to donate, even a dollar can make all the difference. There has never been a more important time to come together as one to help our communities strengthen food security and mental health supports.

Stay tuned for more information and an invite to the campaign launch event!