New Program Reduces 911 Calls, Improves Patient Care

A new program in Windsor-Essex is making a difference when it comes to 911 calls.

Essex-Windsor Emergency Medical Services Vulnerable Patient Navigator program is being credited with a 40% reduction in calls for first responders.

The program was started in 2016 and focuses on people who need care and attention most, usually making a call to 911 at least three times per year.

Chief Bruce Krauter says it also helped reduce offload delays at hospitals.

"A patient who is utilizing 911 frequently causes a greater strain on the health care system than a patient whose health care needs can be managed with regular care and attention," says Krauter.

Of the nearly 350 patients who have been enrolled in the program close to 92% say they're "highly satisfied" that the program has improved their way of life.

The VPN team connects patients to 30 support agencies per month, monitoring their progress to ensure follow-up care is provided.