The KERPA Board is very pleased to publicly announce that as of Jan. 1, 2019, KERPA’s emergency vehicle has been fully operational and responding to calls with lights and sirens, as part of a volunteer service agreement with the BCEHS. The public is invited to the Crescent Valley Fire Department Open House on May 4 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. to view this great addition to emergency response and celebrate five years of volunteer physician response service in the Kootenays. Members of the KERPA team will be there and look forward to meeting you.
The Kootenay Emergency Response Physicians Association (KERPA) has been engaging with the British Columbian Emergency Health Service (BCEHS) for a number of years regarding the Emergency Response Physician (ERP) Program in the Kootenays. The vehicle and the services KERPA can provide are wholly owed to the generous support from Nelson residents and the surrounding community.
“We are very thankful for the continued local support from the community, donors, sponsors, the Emergency Services, BCEHS and other agencies,” said Dr. Nic Sparrow, founder and president of KERPA. “Helping the critically ill and injured in our community and supporting the emergency services is our mandate. We are thrilled to share these important milestones with all of you.”
Since Sparrow began volunteering in this role in 2014, he has responded to more than 360 emergency calls in the Kootenays, including car accidents, cardiac arrests and overdoses.
“The truck has made a huge difference to this work and enabled KERPA to respond to calls in a safe and timely manner,” he said. “Approximately 35 per cent of the calls KERPA attends are life-threatening 911 calls requiring immediate interventions, and one in every 10 calls is to assist at a medical or traumatic cardiac arrest.”
KERPA Director of Operations Theresa Negreiff concurred.
“To now have our own dedicated emergency services vehicle with lights and sirens, and the support of the BC Emergency Health Services, is an enormous step toward the efficiency, safety and sustainability of KERPA’s services. It’s truly about working with emergency services to save lives and help the most
critically ill and injured patients in our communities. With a reliable, emergency response equipped vehicle and the ongoing support of our community behind us, our emergency response physician can safely attend any call when needed.”
Acquisition of the emergency response vehicle was made possible by Gold Sponsors IODE Nelson Chapter, The ATACC Group and the Columbia Basin Trust Community Initiatives Program Fund (Areas E, F and H), as well as generous individuals and local business supporters.
For more information on KERPA, please visit www.kerpa.org or on facebook at facebook.com/kerpakoots, on Twitter - @KERPAkoots or Instagram –