This program teams up paramedics from Central Oneida County Volunteer Ambulance Corps and providers from Upstate Family Health Center to offer on-site care to UFHC patients through telemedicine.
If the paramedic arrives at a call and determines a patient is in need of a primary care provider over the emergency room, they can start an appointment on scene. Providers can speak to patients via video chat on a tablet, while the paramedic takes vitals and does other physical processes. The Paramedic will document in the patients record their findings (in real-time), and the provider will document as usual for a Telehealth Appointment.
It is important to understand that This is not an Emergency Service. If, upon the assessment of a Paramedic, the patient is deemed needing a higher level of care; the Paramedic on scene, along with the provider at UFHC will make the determination to send the patient to the ER. That paramedic on scene will not transport but call the contracted Ambulance (for example if the patient resides in Utica, Utica Fire will be called to transport.)
For this program, the ambulance corps has three fly cars, which are SUVs equipped like ambulances and outfitted with tablets and printers for prescriptions and instructions for quick, on-site care.
The focus of the program is to bring better health equity to traditionally underserved areas.