Manatee County program makes house calls to frequent ER patients, keeps them healthy

Manatee County leaders believe they’ve found a good way to save taxpayer dollars and keep people healthy. The community paramedic program started about a year ago sends county trained employees to check on frequent visitors of the emergency room at their homes.  

“We talk them through their medications, take their vitals, relay any problems they are having to a healthcare provider,” said program director James Crutchfield.

Crutchfield said the program has about one hundred patients. The savings to taxpayers has been about $1 million dollars.

“These patients aren't calling 911 as much and they aren’t going to the emergency room as often,” said Crutchfield.

Crutchfield said the program will roll out to more Manatee County residents later this year.

“This is the direction health care is going,” said Crutchfield.

Joynita Murray is enrolled in the program. She went to the E.R. three times last year. She hasn’t called 911 once this year.

“This program has made my life incredible,” said Murray.

Click here for more information on the Community Paramedic Program.

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