Health care on wheels bridging the gap

Mobile integrated health serves rural communities

Brian Clark

NEW CASTLE, Ind. — Paramedicine programs are bridging the gap between at-home health care and the emergency room.

Brian Clark, EMS chief in Henry County in east-central Indiana, describes mobile integrated health, or paramedicine, as “health care on wheels.”

Whether it’s safe sleep education for parents of newborns, or increasing drug overdose awareness, there are a variety of ways the program helps the community.

“We do old-fashioned home visits,” Clark said. “That’s what our community paramedic program is based on. Visiting these patients at home and reducing hospital readmission.”

A paramedic vehicle is on call in New Castle, Indiana.

Most of the home visits are for chronic illness education and management patients, such as heart failure or COPD diagnosis.

Their goal is to keep people healthy and out of the hospital, when possible.

“We help bridge the gap between home health and the emergency department,” Clark said. “We do medicine reconciliation, education, evaluate fall risks — things like that.

“We participate with the health department to give vaccinations to school-aged children at the schools once a week.

“We try to be an active part of the community and provide care to the entire county.”

Erica Quinlan

Erica Quinlan

Field Editor