Sicamous seniors living with chronic conditions will soon have the support of a community paramedic visiting them in their homes on a regular basis.
Part of BC Emergency Health Services’ (BCEHS) new community paramedicine program, this service is being rolled out in rural and remove communities throughout B.C.
Paramedics Kathy Crandlemire and Suzie Cameron are currently training to deliver the program in Sicamous. Crandlemire expects to be done by Dec. 15, with the program to beginning the following week.
Crandlemire has lived in Sicamous for 36 years and considers herself a “hometown paramedic.” She has been with a BCEHS paramedic for 22 years, and has served as unit chief with the Sicamous ambulance station for 14 years.
“I am very excited to be a part of this new initiative,” says Crandlemire, “and consider it a privilege to be able to expand my career as a community paramedic and continue to work and serve the residents of Sicamous.
Cameron began her career as a paramedic in Revelstoke and has been with the BCEHS for almost 26 years. Although she has only lived in Sicamous for a year, she has worked out of the Sicamous station for seven years and knows the community, as here mother was a resident for 22 years.
“I have always felt like a community paramedic from working smaller communities pretty much my whole career,” says Cameron. “Now with the actual role as one of two community paramedics for Sicamous, I feel honoured to be able to give more to the residents here. I believe that these new positions across B.C. will make a big difference in health care for rural and remote communities.”
Crandlemire and Cameron are currently working through a 14-week orientation program designed to help community paramedics develop the competencies for applying their current scope of practice in a primary health-care setting. They will be providing community paramedicine services 20 hours per week during two 10-hour shifts, and will be available for emergency response for the balance of their work schedules.
To learn more about the program, visit www.bcehs.ca.