NorthStar Emergency Medical Services (NorthStar), a nonprofit rural emergency medical service, part of MaineHealth d/b/a Franklin Memorial Hospital (FMH) will implement Franklin County, Maine’s Rural Emergency Medical Services Training Project to recruit and train emergency medical services (EMS) personnel in the federally designated rural catchment area of Franklin County, Maine. NorthStar, the sole EMS provider in this county, is part of the local Franklin Memorial Hospital and also MaineHealth, an integrated not-for-profit healthcare system. Healthy Community Coalition, also a division within the same company, will collaborate with NorthStar to accomplish project goals. The population served is approximately 40,000 and includes EMS personnel, individuals who could be recruited and trained to serve as EMS personnel, and the region’s residents. The population like many other rural communities is older, sicker, and poorer. More than 50% of the aging population have more than 3 coexisting chronic illnesses. Franklin County is one of the poorest counties in Maine with 13.7% of individuals living below the poverty level. The median household income is $48,053 versus the state at $60,293. The majority of the population face additional socioeconomic vulnerabilities such as poor health, isolation, limited educational attainment, and under or lack of insurance.
Program Goals and Objectives include: Goal 1: Increase recruitment, training and retention of EMS personnel in Franklin County, ME by implementing recruitment and training programs. Objectives 1.1: By the July 30, 2021, Program staff will recruit and train 20 EMS personnel. Objective 1.2: By May 31, 2021, program staff will provide EMS career information to 1,500 individuals at 10 career fairs at state-wide middle/high-schools and career centers. Objective 1.3: By March 31, 2021, NorthStar will provide job-shadowing to 20 University of Maine Farmington Community Health students. Objective 1.4: By June 30, 2021, NorthStar will offer Emergency Medical Response training to 20 local fire department and law enforcement officers. Objective 1.5: By July 31, 2021, strengthen retention strategies to engage 80% of EMS personnel in career expansion programs. Goal 2: Provide EMS personnel with training to understand, and provide safe, stigma free treatment for mental health and substance use disorders, including Opioid Use Disorder. Objective 2.1: By June 30, 2021, Offer mental and substance use disorder training via SAMHSA’s Technology Transfer Centers to 75% of EMS personnel. Objective 2.2: By January 31, 2021, HCC will provide Opioid Use Disorder and Naloxone training to 75% of EMS personnel. Objective 2.3: By November 30, 2020, provide 4 Stigma trainings to reach 75% of EMS personnel. Objective 2.4: By June 30, 2021, Offer Mental Health First Aid/Trauma Debriefing and Suicide Prevention education for 50% of EMS personnel. Goal 3: Ensure EMS personnel have the equipment and training tools needed to provide high quality care. Objective 3.1: By July 31, 2021, NorthStar staff will utilize appropriate training equipment in training classes.