6 Ways a Community Paramedicine Program Can Reduce Inappropriate ED Visits
Community paramedicine, a community-based healthcare model in which paramedics have expanded roles, can help reduce inappropriate emergency department visits, according to a report by the Institute for Population Health Improvement at Sacramento, Calif.-based UC Davis Health System.
In the report, "Community Paramedicine: A Promising Model for Integrating Emergency and Primary Care," the authors describe six community paramedicine services that can help ensure patients receive care at the appropriate place:
1. Transport patients with certain conditions who do not need emergency care to non-ED locations.
2. After assessing and treating a patient as needed at the scene of an emergency response, determine the appropriateness of referring or releasing the patient rather than transporting him or her to a hospital ED.
3. Help frequent 911 callers and frequent ED visitors access primary care and other social services.
Post-hospital or community health services
4. Provide follow-up care for post-discharge patients who are at high risk of a readmission or returning to the ED.
5. Provide support for persons with diabetes, asthma, congestive heart failure or multiple chronic conditions.
6. Partner with community health workers and primary care providers in underserved areas to provide preventive care.
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