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Improving Mental Health Services, Beginning in Springfield Township

Township Fire Department Undergoes Plans For Paramedicine That Could Change the Course

of Behavioral Health Care For the Entire Region


Bethesda Inc., a major funder of health transformation and co-sponsor of TriHealth, announced its award of $200,000 to TriHealth Corporate Health in collaboration with the Springfield Township Fire Department to develop a community paramedicine model focused on behavioral health. “This project has the potential to transform the way care is delivered to patients, bringing fresh ideas to our region,” states Jill Miller, President of Bethesda Inc.


The concept of community paramedicine has been a subject of interest with Springfield Township for a number of years. Township Fire Chief Rob Leininger has been an advocate and guest speaker at fire and EMS conferences promoting the community paramedicine concept for the past two years. “With an increasing number of patients requiring behavioral health care, the future of EMS needs into evolve to a more pro-active approach. In addition to the role we have in emergency care, residents will one day be able to count on our services for much more,” explains Leininger.


Terri Hanlon-Bremer, Chief Operating Officer of TriHealth Corporate Health explains, “This grant allows us to assess the feasibility of a new community paramedic behavioral health care model. This model will set the foundation for paramedics to provide behavioral health intervention by using telemedicine and onsite services in the home environment while connecting patients to care when needed.”


Trustee Mark Berning comments, “The partnership between the Springfield Township Fire Department and TriHealth is groundbreaking. The grant will provide the necessary funding for staff to work and test a paramedicine model over the course of twelve months.” The funding is solely dedicated to the paramedicine model. Once the proof of concept is developed, additional grant funding will be requested for full implementation. A series of videos will be created and shared with the community to update progress and further explain the need and service.


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The terms "behavioral health" and "mental health" are often used interchangeably. Behavioral health includes not only ways of promoting well-being by preventing or intervening in mental illness such as depression or anxiety, but also aims to prevent or intervene in substance abuse or other addictions.


Community Paramedicine is an emerging field in health care where EMTs and Paramedics operate in expanded roles in an effort to connect underutilized resources to underserved populations.