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Press Releases
Apr 02, 2024

Dufferin County Community Paramedic Program Secures Additional $1.8M in Funding to Extend Vital Services to 2026

The Dufferin County Community Paramedic Program, an innovative initiative focused on non-emergency, community-based healthcare, is celebrating a $1.8M two-year investment of funding from the Ministry of Long-Term Care, ensuring continued support for seniors, individuals with disabilities, and those managing chronic illnesses.
Launched a decade ago, the program has been instrumental in revolutionizing healthcare delivery across Dufferin County. By providing comprehensive services aimed at health promotion, system navigation, and injury prevention, the program facilitates easier access to care for vulnerable populations within the comfort of their homes.
Community paramedics play a vital role in conducting a wide range of services, including wellness checks, safe home assessments, remote patient monitoring, and administering medications. These efforts not only reduce emergency department visits and inpatient hospital stays but also enhance patient satisfaction by alleviating stress and promoting a healthier community.
Community paramedics are an extension of a person’s primary care provider, offering care to patients without access. They do not replace the specialized services available in a health care setting or a physician’s office.  
Key highlights of the program include:
  • Tailored care for high-risk individuals with complex medical needs
  • Focus on preventive measures to reduce emergency incidents and hospital visits
  • Provision of mental health support and additional education on healthy living
By the Numbers, 2023:
  •  In-home visits: 2,042
  • Virtual visits: 1,687
  • 27 patients enrolled in the remote patient monitoring program
The Dufferin County Community Paramedic Program continues to be a beacon of compassionate care, providing essential services to those who need it most.
Anyone interested in the Community Paramedic Program can connect with the program directly by phone 1-844-791-1182 or by email, by completing a referral form.
“Community Paramedics have given me the confidence that I need to continue living independently with the assurance that care is only a call away. Their team is made up of knowledgeable, kind and compassionate professionals that have made my at home healthcare experience truly positive.” Joan Meehan, is a client in the community paramedicine program and lives in Dufferin County.
"Dufferin County has an amazing group of paramedics! Words can't express enough how helpful, thoughtful, skilled, knowledgeable, and real these people are.  My husband and I quickly acquired an awesome friendship with them during their care. And I know that friendship has carried on since a year ago. I appreciate and thank them all so much from my heart.” Shelley and her husband, are Dufferin County residents who have received service from the community paramedicine program 
“The Community Paramedic Program is an effective collaboration to help many seniors, people with disabilities and those with chronic illness to receive care that they need in their home.  As a local Family Doctor, I have several homebound patients that are seen regularly by the Community Paramedics.  After the visit, the Community Paramedics do a home visit, they communicate their assessment to me, which then allows me to adjust medications or to start early treatments.  Sometimes the medications are started right away.  For example, the Community Paramedics are able to give a few tablets of antibiotics from their medication bag, to allow time for a pharmacy to deliver more antibiotics the next day.  This has been an effective strategy at reducing Emergency Room Visits by these patients, who may have previously needed to go to the ER frequently.  This program continues to evolve and pivot depending on the needs of the community.  For example, the Community Paramedics collaborated in monitoring COVID positive patients in their home while they required temporary oxygen.  At other times, the Community Paramedics have provided vaccinations to people who were housebound. This additional funding will allow for the Community Paramedics to continue their excellent work and will allow for flexibility as new health issues arise in our community." Dr. Karen A. P. Sandhu, Orangeville Family physician
“Our team is so pleased for this Community Paramedic funding announcement; it will ensure that we will be able to support the most vulnerable members and families in our community. Through this funding will continue to work with our Patient’s primary care physicians and community service partners to ensure they receive excellent care and support in the safety of their own homes.” Tom Reid, Chief, Dufferin County Paramedic Service
"The Dufferin County Community Paramedic Program represents a groundbreaking approach to healthcare delivery. It empowers paramedics to use their expertise in non-emergency care roles, ultimately improving the quality of life for those individuals enrolled and helps them remain in their homes safely for longer periods and avoids unnecessary hospital visits.” Kim Delahunt, President & CEO, Headwaters Health Care Centre
“Dufferin County is dedicated to supporting community health, well-being, and safety through collaboration with our partners and the service providers who know our community best. The Dufferin County Community Paramedic Program helps ensure that our most vulnerable community members have the support they need, when they need it, within the comfort of their homes. We thank the Ministry of Long-Term Care for its continued funding of this innovative program, and the dedicated paramedics in our community for their compassionate care.” Darren White, Warden, Dufferin County
“Our government is continuing to take action to build a more connected and convenient healthcare system in Dufferin County, and in communities across the province. Our investment in the Dufferin County Paramedicine Program is another way we are making it easier for people to navigate the healthcare system while providing access to care when and where people need it, in the comfort of their own home.” Sylvia Jones, MPP Dufferin-Caledon

Photo Caption: Kate Martin, Community Paramedic during a visit with client, Joan Meehan, who lives in Dufferin County. 

About Dufferin County

The County of Dufferin is an upper-tier municipality that sits on the fringe of the Greater Toronto Area, about 100 kilometres northwest of Toronto. Dufferin is largely a rural county with three urban settlement areas. The region is well known for its rivers, rolling hills and excellent outdoor recreation opportunities. The UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve, Niagara Escarpment and world-famous Bruce Trail all run through Dufferin offering spectacular vistas and hiking opportunities. Home to over 67,000 residents, Dufferin County boasts fabulous restaurants, shopping and amenities. Connect with the County on Facebook, X, Instagram and LinkedIn and learn more at 
About Headwaters Health Care Centre
Headwaters Health Care Centre is an innovative hospital located in Orangeville, Ontario dedicated to quality patient-centred care together with our community in Dufferin County-Caledon. Headwaters Health Care Centre is the license holder for Dufferin County Paramedics. In addition to providing acute and complex continuing care with a 24/7 Emergency Department, and extensive Ambulatory Care outpatient services, Headwaters is accredited with Exemplary Standing by Accreditation Canada, certified as a Breast Assessment Centre by the Ontario Breast Screening Program, and will be offering MRI services in 2024.Headwaters is a cornerstone of health and wellness for the communities it serves. It is one of the area's largest employers with over 800 staff, 200 physicians and six midwives and benefits from the dedication of over 200 volunteers.

Headwaters is also a proud partner in the Hills of Headwaters Collaborative Ontario Health Team. Learn more at and support the hospital at
Media Contacts:
Megan Ball, Communications Manager, County of Dufferin  519-941-2816 Ext. 2513
Jennifer Hamilton, Director, Communication & Stakeholder Relations, HHCC 519-278-5085