Community paramedicine () is a model of community‐based health care being used around the world. Our objective was to study the patient perspective and valuation of this type of program to understand its potential value for primary care innovation in the future.
The community paramedicine program is a partnership between primary care physicians and specially trained community paramedics, designed to provide in‐home support for complex chronic disease patients in Ontario, Canada.
As part of an ongoing clinical trial we designed an embedded qualitative evaluation using constructionist grounded theory methodology.
Data collection included in‐depth interviews with 30 patients and/or family members and 60 hours of observation.
The health care needs of this complex population are largely attributes that impact a patient's quality of life—including recognition of their vulnerability, providing a safety‐net in times of exacerbation and health education and accountability. This seems to be facilitated by a relationship with a dedicated provider that increases continuity of care.
Home‐based community paramedicine programs like appear to be able to create a patient‐centered, safe, responsive therapeutic relationship that is often not possible within the standard primary health care system.