Seniors Situation Room by Dawn Ford SAVING Community Paramedicine APRIL 20, 2015


Dawn & EMS

DawnFord_SSRCFN – A couple of years ago, I was called to an elderly friend’s apartment because she wasn’t feeling well. I assessed that she was indeed having a heart attack and called 911.

She insisted I change her nightgown which was soaked with perspiration and get her girdle for her because she didn’t want to go to hospital without wearing it.

I was able to gently change her nightgown but there was no way I was putting a restrictive girdle on her. I stalled her by telling her that we could wait and see if the Paramedics thought it was ok. They arrived in what seemed like only seconds and took charge. They didn’t give her the girdle either.

As they were taking her out on the stretcher she winked and whispered to me that both male Paramedics were very handsome. How sick does a seventy-eight year old have to be to not noticed two handsome guys?? lol . So I jokingly said to them, “Watch her!! She’s HOT'”. They laughed and so did she, which told me she was going to be ok. And, apart from a new but mild heart condition, she was fine.

When people do loving and kind things over and above what is required of them magic can happen. Even miracles. This is what happened when a couple of Paramedics in another city some time ago, concerned about a few of their clients who called 911 often, decided on their time off to pay them a friendly visit and just check to see how they were.

This is way beyond the ‘call of duty’. They continued to do it. Here are some Paramedics who have busy lives of their own and have a lot to do and yet, care so much about the people they serve as Paramedics. Doesn’t get any better than that.

Miracles did happen. The rate of 911 calls decreased dramatically apparently.

Now in some thirteen cities in Ontario there is a new Paramedic project in operation called ‘Community Paramedicine’. We have had this service in Cornwall since January of this year. Funding is provided by the Ministry of Health and Long- Term Care until July although they are hoping to stretch it to the fall and seek new funding. A team of eleven Paramedics, specially trained are available to visit the people at risk and those who call 911 often. This will be done on a referral basis.

Reminds me of the old days when our doctors made home visits.

My editor Jamie and I met with the project co-ordinator Michelle McMillan and two Paramedics, Pascale Ricard and Randy Lalonde . Here is a video of our meeting and their explanation of the service:



I was impressed as I listened to these three people on how enthusiastic they are about the project and the results that have happened with lower rates of 911 calls already. Michelle is also so enthused about this project’s ability to address the needs of our most fragile residents.

Pascale talked about the fact that this team of Paramedics are specifically trained to take in details such as mental health, safety ,or nourishment issues which are so important to the client’s well being and future needs.

Randy talked about the fact that each client has a history of being a person, valuable to our community and how important it is to let them know how they are still matter despite age or illness.. I could sense how much they care about the clients well being.

This is a wonderful service for our community. For more info call 613-930-2787 or 2178

I happened to be in the downtown area one day and a bit hungry, so I moseyed into The Grill Hutt at 10 second Street West. After ordering my usual eggs and bacon, I noticed a sign on the wall which said ‘Seniors. 1 egg, choice of meat, 1 toast, home fries and coffee or tea $3.99. Wow. What a bargain. The coffee is great, served in a big generous mug. The staff were very friendly with good service. Nice place for a good breakfast or lunch.

Whenever I have eggs in a restaurant, I never have the potatoes because it is too much for me to eat. At the Family Corner Restaurant the other day, I noticed when I got the bill that the waitress had written ‘no pot’ on it. Just for fun, I went to Henry the manager and showed him the bill and said the waitress said I couldn’t have any ‘pot’. We had a bit of fun over that one.

The restaurant was beautifully decorated for Easter with decals of little chicks, eggs and bunnies. I had teased Henry about only having one Teddy Bear with all his Christmas decorations. This Easter he had many stuffed toys of Bunny Rabbits of all sizes and colours. Really nice for the children, I thought. However, a couple of my friends, ladies my age, were commenting on the bunnies and which one they particularly liked. Guess that five year old inner child never grows up. I must admit though, that I kind of liked the brown bunny myself.

I wish we had some way of forming as fund to help seniors with their vet bills for their pets.

When you start getting ‘over the hill’, I guess that is the way it is despite all the glamorous face creams and stuff to make us look younger. When I took my aging car in for maintenance the mechanic said that with only about 30,000 k on it, it would probably last me the rest of my life. I said to him, ‘How old do you think I am????’….Better get some new creams, eh??

DF 43Here are three and a quarter lads from CCVS at a football game in the late 50’s. Left to right is Sydney Horowitz, Tim Phillips and Jack Murray. The hand you see reaching up and the curly hair at the right hand bottom of the page belongs to Ron Goodfellow who obviously is fooling around on the ground. Handsome guys, eh?? Those were the days!!

Here is a cute joke:

A man and a woman were having a quiet , romantic dinner in a fine restaurant. They were gazing lovingly at each other and holding hands. The waitress, taking another order at a table a few steps away, suddenly noticed the woman slowly sliding down her chair and under the table – but the man stared straight ahead. The waitress watched as the woman slid all the way down her chair and out of sight under the table. Still the man continued to stare straight ahead. The waitress, thinking this behaviour a bit odd and worried that it might offend other diners, went over to the table and tactfully began by saying to the man, “Pardon me, sir, but I think your wife just slid under the table.”

The man calmly looked at her and said, “No, she didn’t. ..she just walked in the door.”

Have a good week, Dawn

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  1. Dawn I remember so well about the doctors going to homes to check on patients and those were the good days. Today you can’t get a family doctor not even here in Ottawa. Doctors today are out only for the money and not for patient care or anything like what it used to be. That is a good thing about paramedics checking on patients and it is something that they never do. My husband had a word for it like a drop off service or something like that. We had a paramedic living in my old one bedroom apartment on our floor and he was one of the responders to that young military guy who was shot by the nutcase at the statue of the fallen soldier. You have a good sense of humor Dawn about your friend being hot and after the paramedics. LOL LOL. ROLF! At 78 she is not dead yet. LOL LOL.

  2. I have to disagree. Doctors are not in it for the money. My cardiologist has 8,000+ patients, my GP has 2.500+ patients. They don’t have the time to drop in on patients like doctors did even 20 – 30 years ago. Part of the problem is the doctor shortage across the country.

  3. I also remember the Doctor making house calls on his bicycle to visit my sister when she had cancer.It made all of us feel that we were not alone.Now on a lighter note. I was visiting that same friend Dawn mentioned in the hospital. The nurse announced that the dr. was coming by and our friend asked for her lipstick!

  4. Hugger my doctor’s secretary said that young doctors today cannot afford a private practice with an office and yes they are there for the money. A GP doesn’t make much money and young people are going in to the specialties for the bigger money. A GP makes over $300K a year which is peanuts by the time they pay for their secretary, office, utilities, liability insurance, etc. there isn’t much left. Those who are OBGYN’s say that they might as well be nurses at the pay they get. Our landlord has one son going through as a neurologist and another son in in cardiology and a daughter in law school. What is lacking the most are the GP’s. There are more people today than what there were before which is true. We have a humoungous lack of doctors and the government is to blame for their cuts and putting it into administration which is the humoungous flaw and fly in the ointment.

  5. I as a nurse am thrilled to hear of this new paramedic program. It is like the missing link in the community. Many will benefit from it however there are still those who go by the wayside. Perhaps if the public were more informed they could call these paramdics if they saw or knew of someone in need of a visit. What are the policies and rules of this service? It would be interesting to know. Thank You!

  6. That’s why, Jules, you rarely see single doctor practices any more. My GP has 7 doctors in his office. They all share the admin, staff, fees, etc.. Even my Cornwall cardiologist shares his office with another doctor. My Ottawa cardiologist shares his office with 14 doctors. My ENT doctor shares his office with 5 other doctors. There are advantages to office sharing. If one of my doctors is out I can have my prescriptions renewed by one of his colleagues. Or I can see a colleague if its’s an emergency. They are not there for the money. Ask a doctor sometime. If it was money, with the cutbacks in recent years, a lot of them would have found other careers by now.

  7. Hi Dawn,
    Your article, “Seniors Situation Room”, was just sent to me this week. What a surprise. Fortunately, some of our former classmates follow Cornwall news and were good enough to forward the article and, more importantly, the picture. I was never aware of that picture and and don’t know how you found it but I’m pleased you did. It sure brings back great memories.
    I hope you receive this message because it would be great to hear from you. Please use my email address for this purpose.
    Best regards,
    Sid Horovitz

  8. Hugger my doctor GP is alone in his office but a few doors from where he is he shares his patients when he is on vacation the other doctor takes over. Tammy (the secretary) said to me and to my daughter that to rent those offices cost a lot of money for young doctors today so they share the space together. My doctor is downtown on Kent Street so you can imagine the cost. The patients complain about the cost of parking a car but my daughter and I take OC Transpo’s “cattle cars”.

    Dawn is a wonderful lady and she reminded me of the new system with the paramedics. I have seen some paramedics come here to the building because there are many seniors and people who are not well physically so that must be what is happening.

    Jamie mayor Horowitz’s son is on your site Sid. My son told me that Mayor Horowitz son is in Cornwall – no wonder you left Montréal for Cornwall – there is history in that town that the young people are not aware of.

  9. Can you imagine seeing the old photos of wonderful memories when people were young and in school and I sometimes pull out my own photos and one day my husband saw an old photo of me when I was 16 years old and then looked at me and said “what happened to you” LOL LOL. Well yours truly got old and we sure don’t stay young for long.

    The dentist that worked on me yesterday was young and handsome and married with a family. He had two pretty girls in his office and one ordinary. We had so many laughs. My husband went in first and I could hear the laughter going on and I think that my husband put the dentist up to something when I got in the chair. I have to get even somehow with him – I am trying to figure out what so far. I was put so far back in the chair that I could hardly breathe.

  10. Jules….Mayor Horowitz —-Windsor??

  11. Hugger Mayor Horowitz was mayor of Cornwall back in the 1950’s era at the time of the Seaway being built and his son lives or lived in Cornwall and my son met him and he pointed out the son to me one day crossing Second Street while we were in the car and that was some years ago. Mayor Horowitz was the best mayor that Cornwall had and you sure don’t find people like that around today. Pitt and Second Streets were alive with people and it was like the way Ottawa is with so many people out shopping and going and coming from work even in the 60’s era before everything died. Today Cornwall is a grave yard and I don’t say that lightly – it is a mighty sad place to go to. The town is empty and we would be lucky to see a dog or a cat around town.

  12. Pat Shaver you remember those days as well as I do. I had a GP who came to the house and he was well known in Cornwall and also my parents doctor came to the house for dad who was very sick. I remember when doctors drove cars where the licence plate had the sign on their licence plate that they were doctors and till today in my husband’s Lebanon that same sign is on the licence plates of doctors. In those days doctors were real doctors unlike today. I will never ever forget the good days of Cornwall and that part is true but today it is way too depressing to see. When I see a lovely lady like Dawn I can imagine her when she was in nursing – an excellent person to have around and she is wonderful even today. Many cheers for Dawn Ford.

  13. Oh, yes….Cornwall is empty… one lives or works here. Seriously??

  14. Jules: thank you. You are very kind
    I just want to mention that I was raised in Cornwall , spent some years in Montreal and Glen Norman and came back here in the 80’s. I am glad I grew up here and I am glad I live here now. As kids we had the best of times and always had lots to do. We have lost a lot of our wonderful facilities such as the old swimming pool, canal, businesses like Domtar and now the bridge. But Cornwall is more than bricks and mortar. We have wonderful people here who are working hard to make a difference in the community. Every time you open a newspaper, some business staff and or other volunteers are out there working so hard for a charity or to help someone in need in our community. I think community is all about people and we have the best. Cornwall is a wonderful place to live and I am happy to be here.

  15. Dawn my memories are in the past when things were good. Going to live from Cornwall to Montréal would have been a shock for you like what Ottawa was for me at one time and then I got kind of used to it. Nowadays things are nuts as can be and so much crime even in the burbs. I wouldn’t want to raise my children here if they were little – the crime is insane. Nothing but gangs and murders even in tonights papers of the Sun and the Citizen. In the past you would never hear about all what is going on nowadays – crimes were few and far between but today it is total insanity.

    Yes there are a lot of good people in Cornwall and that is true and yes many do volunteer work for the community and that is the way it should be. Cornwall is small and easy to get around and people know a lot of people but here in Ottawa you hardly know a soul. Dawn you are one of the top people in Cornwall that is well loved by all. You take good care of yourself and love those stories that you write. You brighten our days and evenings.

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