Rochester Mayor Malik D. Evans and Monroe County Executive Adam J. Bello announced on Jan. 10, 2022 the launch of a Rochester/Monroe County Nurse Navigation Program to help city and county residents and visitors quickly reach the most appropriate level of care when calling 9-1-1.
This collaborative effort also includes American Medical Response (AMR), which is an ambulance company/service operating in the greater Rochester community.
The city and county the Nurse Navigation Program provides greater access to a wider variety of care options to meet callers’ specific needs, which may include a virtual visit with a physician.
The collaborative partners also say the program’s goal is to increase the availability of emergency response personnel to respond to life-threatening emergencies and reduce emergency department overcrowding.
Calls to 9-1-1 for specific, non-life threatening injuries or illnesses are to be routed to a New York-licensed nurse. The nurse is expected to assesses the caller’s symptoms and to facilitate the most appropriate medical care, such as a virtual visit with an emergency physician or nurse, instructions on self-care, or transport to a local healthcare provider, including clinics, urgent care centers, or if needed, a hospital emergency department.
The Nurse Navigation Program is anticipated to alleviate pressure on emergency medical service systems and hospitals while educating communities on the appropriate use of 9-1-1 so systems function more efficiently. The city and county want to making more ambulances, emergency medical technicians and paramedics available to respond to life-threatening emergencies throughout the community. This new program is also expected to help reduce emergency department overcrowding and improve timeliness of care for people needing medical treatment in our community.
Fire and emergency medical service agencies are envisioned to be enabled to provide timely, appropriate and quality patient care while controlling costs, improving outcomes, and reducing reliance on hospital emergency departments for primary healthcare through operation of the Nurse Navigation Program.
“Nurse Navigation is proven to work in other cities and one of our primary roles is to provide our citizens with high-quality municipal government services,” said Evans. “This project is an excellent example of a public-private collaboration that will improve quality of life.” Evans went on to say, “It delivers an innovative solution to some of the issues we’re seeing around staffing shortages and emergency room overcrowding. I’m grateful to County Executive Bello, AMR and all of our community’s first responders, telecommunicators, dispatchers and healthcare providers for their contributions in keeping Rochester’s citizens safe and healthy.”
“The Nurse Navigation Program will modernize our community’s emergency medical response and help alleviate the strain on local ambulance crews and hospitals at a time when COVID-19 continues to spread,” said Bello. “Thank you to all our first responders who work tirelessly to help our residents.”
Tim Frost, Regional Director for Global Medical Response, the parent company to AMR, said, “We are proud of our long-term partnership with Rochester and Monroe County to help people get the right care at the right time, and we are excited to leverage our national expertise and integrated healthcare solutions to expand access to care, improve patient experience and increase population health throughout the region,” adding that “The program will allow us to better serve area residents by ensuring that callers with lower acuity complaints are presented with more innovative paths to treatment that are often closer to home, where medical treatment can be received faster than a visit to a hospital emergency department.”