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October / November 2021

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Cover Photo by: Les Card y Jeff Byers

ON2021 – Editorial

In 2003 the Canadian Mental Health Association named September 10th the world suicide prevention day. Then, in September, Canadians talked about suicide prevention during the month. We know that paramedics experience traumatic calls, poor sleep, long shifts, and lack of downtime after difficult calls, etc., which increases the risk of burnout, PTSD, and suicide. Some articles said that the rate is as high as 25% of us have suicidal thoughts at some point; thankfully, most of that stays just in

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Paramedic Wellbeing Series – You are what you think

Introduction Spoiler alert – Paramedics experience higher levels of depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and mental fatigue when compared to the general public, and other emergency services. It is widely known that paramedics experience high rates of mental health illness and emotional distress. However, there is limited understanding of how the environment in which paramedics work contributes to this problem. Psychological harm experienced by paramedics takes its toll on individuals in varying capacities and it is not our intention

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Burnout and PTSD

INTRODUCTION Paramedics often experience some of the worst calls and scenes that life can throw at anyone, from grizzly animal attacks to horrendous motor vehicle accidents to burns and abuse in pediatric patients. They are often the first on scene and must manage their psychological stimulation and the patients, family members, friends, and witnesses’. It certainly never is a textbook situation in the life of a First Responder. Paramedics can often develop Burnout Syndrome during their career because of the

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Take Charge of Your Mind Wellness

This article is a special post by F.R.Y. and does not necessarily represent Canadian Paramedicine’s, or its affiliates, opinion. References in this article are for informational purposes only and you should consult with your local health guidelines and protocols before applying any of the information in it. Studies(1) show that First Responders experience 5x musculoskeletal disorders than general workers, suffer from sleep disorders due to shift work, experience anxiety and inability to relax or “let go”, and 30% develop depression

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Of Substance

“Of Substance” is a new set of articles that will deal on the growing Opioid Crisis in Canada. Canadian Paramedicine would like to thank Charlene Vacon for reaching out to us with this proposal and for agreeing to speerhead this important innitiative. Ask any paramedic if Canada is in a drug crisis and they’ll tell you it’s at its worst now. We see what’s happening behind the front doors of quaint cozy homes, closed to most people but calling to

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Retirement From Above: 49 Years of Aviation

When compared to ground paramedicine, transport medicine shares certain similarities – both are staffed with paramedics, both provide an exceptional environment for the provision of expert care and both have the goal of transporting patients to definitive care. However, transport medicine is not without its subtle nuances. Facilitating long patient transports in a pressurized tube (at least on the fixed-wing side of life, but we all know our HEMS colleagues are the true heroes in transport medicine), and we rarely

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Fox Flight – ISO POD: Simple Problem, Complex Solution

When it comes to international medical repatriation, Fox Flight Air Ambulance has dealt with just about every imaginable case over the course of its more than 25 years in business. But when the COVID-19 pandemic essentially shut down the global travel industry in March of 2020, Fox Flight was presented with an unusual challenge. The small Toronto-based company employs a fleet of specially configured Learjets to transport sick and injured patients home from wherever they happen to be in the

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EMS World Expo 2021

From Oct 4th to 8th in Atlanta, Georgia, the EMS World expo gathered 4,000 people. Canadian Paramedicine was there to check the latest in prehospital care and new products in the market. The EMS World expo offered the trade show, masterclasses, and conferences from experts in EMS; attendees also enjoyed visiting the Trauma Centre and riding along with the local EMS agency. The sim lab offered experiences like the dissection of a heart and a cadaver lab to practice skills

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STARS ALLEVIATES PRESSURE ON ICUS WITH COVID-19 PATIENT TRANSFERS AS CASES SPIKE

By the time most patients infected with COVID-19 need care from STARS, they are critically ill. They are physically exhausted and can’t breathe on their own. For most, there is no treatment option for our crews but to intubate and prepare them for a mechanical ventilator to take over the job of breathing in an effort to save their lives. “It’s heartbreaking to see how profoundly ill they are,” said Janice Kirkham, clinical operations manager, and flight nurse at the

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DR. GREG POWELL REFLECTS ON HIS COMMITMENT TO PROVIDING CRITICAL CARE

In recognition of his accomplishments, Dr. Greg Powell, co-founder of STARS, has been awarded the Alberta Order of Excellence (AOE), the highest honour the Province of Alberta can bestow on a citizen. “There’s a surreal sense of ‘how did this happen to me?’ ” said Dr. Powell. “It triggers huge feelings of humility and gratitude to the people who were committed to get something done. I’m blessed to be the person who gets to receive this award on behalf of

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Ontario Paramedic Association – ON2021

OPA Wellness Committee Are you a motivated individual who is passionate about making impactful change? The OPA is seeking participants who are interested in making a difference in the mental health and wellness of the paramedic community to support ongoing initiatives of the OPA Wellness Committee.   The purpose of the OPA Wellness Committee is to empower paramedics with pragmatic tools toward attaining a wellness continuum within the field of paramedicine. This committee has been established by the OPA who

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Toronto Paramedic Association News – ON2021

September 30th 2021 was the last day that Dr Rick Verbeek worked as the Medical Director for Toronto Paramedics before he retired. Dr Verbeek was an extremely well liked and respected physician and Medical Director. We will miss his steady presence, support, and guidance, as we all wish him the best in this next chapter of his life. Below is an open letter to Paramedics from Dr Rick Verbeek ‘On my last day as Medical Director I am writing to

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Paramedic Services Chiefs of Saskatchewan – ON2021

Saskatchewan Paramedics Honoured Saskatchewan ground EMS serves the Province with 105 ambulance services, over 250 ambulance units, over 2,200 licensed professionals and they cover a geographical land base of 650,000 square kms and serve a population of 1.2 million residents.  These dedicated practitioners respond to over 130,000 calls a year on average (and closer to 150,000 calls during COVID). Each year, an Emergency Medical Services Provincial Awards Ceremony is held at Government House in Regina to honour recipients of the

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ON2021
ON2021
ON2021 - Editorial
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  • ON2021 - Editorial

    ON2021 - Editorial

    Nov 13, 2021 •

  • ON2021 - You Are What You Think

    ON2021 - You Are What You Think

    Nov 13, 2021 •

  • ON2021 - Burnout and PTSD

    ON2021 - Burnout and PTSD

    Nov 13, 2021 •

  • ON2021 - Take Charge Of Your Mind Wellness

    ON2021 - Take Charge Of Your Mind Wellness

    Nov 13, 2021 •

  • ON2021 - Of Substance

    ON2021 - Of Substance

    Nov 13, 2021 •

  • ON2021 - Retirement From Above

    ON2021 - Retirement From Above

    Nov 13, 2021 •

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Board of Editors

Becky Donelon
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Walter Tavares
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Chris Hood
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Francis Kelly Sheppard
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Mike Billingham
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Steve Whitfield
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Judah Goldenstein
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Dean DiMonte
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Tim Hiller
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