Thank you Family Health Team, partners

The following is a monthly column for rotation of residents from Highlands East

By Jan Simon

Recently I have had two personal phone calls from Wilberforce residents praising the care they received from our Haliburton Highlands Family Health Team (HHFHT).
They are truly a remarkable team consisting of team members and partners such as hospital doctors and staff, Haliburton County Paramedic Services, the volunteer firefighters, pharmacists, nurse practitioners and opticians to name a few.
Together they serve all of Haliburton County expertly, caringly and with the utmost consideration for everyone.

For me the story began 27 years ago when I moved to Wilberforce. My real estate agent was recovering from cancer. I asked her about the medical care here and that is when she told me of her situation and how wonderful the care was in our area. She put my mind at ease.
Since then I have been privy to many stories from local residents and throughout the county who have the highest regard for the Family Health Team.
A neighbour who had purchased the property next to mine was clearing his property and was attacked by bees. He arrived on my doorstep with welts all over his body and his eyes reddened. I took him directly to the pharmacy for help, believing he was in need of an EpiPen. His tongue was swelling up. 9-1-1 was called and the paramedics arrived within minutes and started him on an IV drip. They took him to the hospital where they followed up with treatment, and he had a good outcome.
More recently a friend called me to tell me she had gone to see a local optometrist when it was detected that she had a stroke behind her eye. She was diagnosed and sent on to Lindsay for immediate attention.
Another friend had a procedure done and the next day his blood pressure dropped drastically. He could not move. The 9-1-1 call brought the emergency medical service attendants within five minutes. He was sent immediately to Lindsay for life saving treatment.
A quick and accurate diagnosis combined with interaction between members of our amazing Family Health Team saved yet another life in Wilberforce.
With ongoing training sessions in all aspects of health care and people caring about people, lives have been saved in Highlands East and throughout the county.

A GoFundMe was started by a Wilberforce volunteer firefighter to initiate a water rescue program as we had lost two men in Dark Lake in two years.
We also need to recognize our municipal politicians whom we have to thank for our wonderful Haliburton and Minden hospitals, as well as the state-of-the art long term care facilities that are attached to them.
Extendicare is planning a new location in the near future and are to be commended for the care they have given to local residents.
Peterborough Regional Health Centre and Ross Memorial in Lindsay are great facilities, which we have been directed to for further treatment. Helicopter pilots are to be commended for the work they do getting patients to their destination quickly and safely. The staff at both hospitals are excellent, which I have had the personal experience.
Given the situation of the past two years dealing with COVID-19, which includes the ongoing health issues of our aging population, we need to applaud all our front line workers. Their mental health, given what they see on a regular basis, is also very important, and I know that there are programs in place to help them when there is a need.

From all of Wilberforce and our Municipality of Highlands East, thank you for all you do for us. You are the best!

Submitted by Jan Simon