Over the past number of years a growing number of Island
Fire Departments have been providing Medical First Response abilities in
co-operation with Island EMS. There are 38 fire stations and 1000+
Volunteer Firefighters spread across PEI. Firefighters have a time
advantage in a lot of situations, and that is what we are trying to
capitalize on with this program. Volunteer Firefighters have been
assisting people in their local communities for many years, and the
Medical First Responder system is an extension of that service.
With the new partnership the Province of PEI will be providing funding,
Island EMS will provide the instructors, and the Association and Fire
Departments will be providing facilities for training as well as the
response abilities. Fire Departments across PEI have been active in this
area for years with Medical First Responder training and response, the
program provides for funding and consistency.
We have been developing this program for a couple of years with Island
EMS and the Department of Health to create standard protocols and obtain
Medical oversight. Now we will be able to provide consistent training
and response across PEI, which provides for more effective care.
Island Firefighters can now be trained to the Medical First Responder
Level of care by
Island EMS Paramedics. The training is designed specifically for those who respond
to medical emergencies on a regular basis. “The Paramedics from
Island EMS are clearly still the ones to be the primary care
professionals in all medical emergencies. Firefighters can enhance
this care in situations like cardiac arrest where well trained first
responders can make a significant difference if they arrive quickly and
have appropriate training and equipment. This partnership improves the
emergency response, and will save lives.” says President Tim Jenkins.
Medical First Responder programs have been gaining popularity across
Canada as a method of improving overall emergency medical services. The
first responder program is just one link in the chain. The partnership
between Island EMS, the Province, and the Firefighters Association
promotes a more effective level of care on a community level.