EMS provider Falck has partnered with virtual care provider MD Ally to offer non-emergency patients access to virtual care providers. Paramedics and EMTs in Alameda County can now connect non-emergency patients to virtual care professionals, allowing them to decide on appropriate treatment and potentially eliminating unnecessary hospital admissions. This initiative aims to enhance emergency care operations, improve patient outcomes, reduce healthcare costs, and provide a multidisciplinary approach to patient care. Similar initiatives have been implemented to enhance EMS operations through virtual tools, such as Mount Sinai EMS’s ET3 program.
Emergency medical services (EMS) play a critical role in providing lifesaving care to patients. However, there are instances where patients may not require hospitalization, but a lack of clarity surrounding the prioritization of patients can lead to issues in ensuring they receive appropriate treatment. In response to this challenge, EMS provider Falck has partnered with virtual care solution provider MD Ally to expand the scope of care for Alameda County, California, residents by enabling EMS professionals to connect patients to virtual care providers. This collaboration aims to enhance emergency care operations and offer quality services that are aligned with the needs of Alameda County residents. This article examines the partnership between Falck and MD Ally, the benefits it brings, and other similar initiatives undertaken by healthcare organizations to enhance EMS operations through virtual tools.
The Partnership between Falck and MD Ally
Falck is one of the largest EMS providers in the world and the official provider of emergency ambulance services in Alameda County, California. The company handles over 140,000 911 calls in the county annually, indicating a high potential for outreach associated with the program. Falck has partnered with virtual care solution provider MD Ally to offer non-emergency patients access to virtual care providers. The new partnership enables paramedics and emergency medical technicians (EMTs) in Alameda County to connect non-emergency patients to virtual care professionals. This collaboration could eliminate the need for a patient to travel to a hospital as EMTs work with MD Ally providers to decide on the appropriate treatment.
The program will cover a wide array of conditions, including chronic pain, diarrhea, migraines, and influenza, and will also include prescription refills. The partnership aims to enhance emergency care operations, enabling paramedics and firefighters to handle emergencies that require immediate attention while providing quality services that are aligned with the needs of Alameda County residents. Through this collaboration, Falck aims to improve the physical and mental well-being of the community.
Benefits of the partnership
There are various advantages for patients and the healthcare system from the alliance between Falck and MD Ally. In the first place, the program makes sure that non-emergency patients get the right care without having to go to the hospital, thereby lowering the number of unnecessary hospital admissions. By using this strategy, emergency rooms might become less crowded and more accessible for seriously ill patients. Second, the program makes sure that patients receive timely and appropriate care to enhance patient outcomes. Thirdly, by preventing non-emergency ambulance transport and hospital admissions, the program may lower healthcare expenses.
In addition to helping EMS workers, the cooperation frees up paramedics and firefighters to respond to urgent situations. This approach could enhance emergency care operations, enabling EMS professionals to provide lifesaving care to critically ill patients. Furthermore, the program offers virtual care providers the opportunity to work collaboratively with EMS professionals, providing a multidisciplinary approach to patient care. This approach could enhance patient outcomes by ensuring that patients receive comprehensive care that addresses their physical and mental well-being.
Other similar initiatives
Several other healthcare organizations have taken similar steps to enhance EMS operations through virtual tools. In December 2022, Mount Sinai EMS worked with the health system’s Department of emergency medicine to extend telehealth options to patients who engage in non-urgent 911 calls. As part of a federal pilot known as Emergency Triage, Treat, and Transport (ET3), this telehealth program includes a patient assessment following a 911 call. If EMTs determine that the patient does not require urgent medical attention, they will connect the patient to emergency medicine providers through tablets. This approach aims to enhance patient outcomes by ensuring that patients receive timely and appropriate care.