Md. fire dept. receives grant to develop community paramedicine program
The grant will help reduce operational strain on EMS resources and improve care for patients with complex medical conditions
Howard County Department of Fire and Rescue Services
COLUMBIA, Md. — The Howard County Department of Fire and Rescue Services received a $10,000 seed grant from the Horizon Foundation to begin planning a mobile integrated health program.
The grant, part of the Horizon Foundation’s commitment to improving health and wellness in Howard County, will allow HCDFRS to plan and evaluate potential MIH and community paramedicine interventions that will help reduce operational strain on EMS resources and improve care for patients with complex medical conditions.
MIH-CP is an evolving discipline within the field of EMS that focuses on providing non-urgent services by identifying patients whose needs are best met through better access to non-emergency care. Emergency calls to 911 centers may involve patients with chronic diseases who require help managing an ongoing medical condition.
Traditionally, on a national scale, paramedics could do little for these patients beyond transporting them to the hospital. With the introduction of MIH-CP, the department will continue its partnerships with hospitals, primary care physicians, mental health providers and county agencies to administer this innovative program that navigates patients to the right level of care.
“Working with partners throughout our community, including the Howard County Health Department and Howard County General Hospital, HCDFRS is excited to develop an MIH-CP program plan,” Howard County Executive Allan H. Kittleman said. “Thanks to the Horizon Foundation for its support of this initiative and its dedication to the health of the residents of Howard County.”
“Programs such as MIH-CP can help decrease operational strain on our emergency care resources, while at the same time improve the care for patients with chronic and complex medical and behavioral health conditions,” Medical Director Dr. Matthew Levy said. “We look forward to working with our partner agencies across Howard County to develop an MIH-CP program plan intended to meet the unique needs of those who reside, work, and visit Howard County.”
“Dr. Levy and his team continue to work with regional associates to identify creative ways to serve our county,” Fire Chief John S. Butler said. “I am excited to see the positive impact of this new initiative."