Wednesday, April 8, 2015

PCES meets national accreditation standards

Toni Lucas

Pincher Creek Emergency Services (PCES) passed an audit for accreditation through Accreditation Canada for their medical services work.  The auditing team visited approximately three weeks ago in the middle of March.   "Our service has been accredited, as a requirement of our Alberta Health Services contract to provide ambulance," explained PCES Chief Dave Cox. "The recognized accreditation body is Accreditation Canada.  In the procedures, we go through a primer with them."

"We got a report from the auditors, but we had to wait for the formal report to come from Ottawa that we passed our accreditation audit.  Our next step is to apply for accreditation, formally."  PCES has been working towards this since October 2013 as part of the ambulance agreement that was laid out between PCES and Alberta Health Services.

A team of people worked together to achieve the accreditation.  Deputy Chief Ambulance Marg Cox was the leading force in with a lot of assistance from Emergency medical technician Kate Feist, Captain ambulance/fire Jennifer Fisher-Sundberg, and firefighter/medical first responder Sheri Monk.

"We have met the accreditation standards for 2 years," explained Chief Cox, who is delighted to be well underway in the national accreditation process.  This accreditation regulates both process, and patient safety. They sent auditors who Cox said were very helpful in coaching the team into improvements.  The auditors went on a call to see the staff in action, went over records, checked procedures and processes, looked over equipment, talked with staff, and spoke to those that the staff has responded to, to get feedback from the public that this station has served. "This is going to be primarily the ambulance, but it will also provide the medical first responders because they are also part of the ambulance crew, and their equipment, it kind of overlaps into that, as well. They were impressed by our crew, and the quality of our crew and professionalism."

"For us, it says a lot for the quality of our service, that we met accreditation.  That's not saying that we haven't got work to do, or ways we need to improve."

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