Mobile integrated health care (MIH) is a new model of community-based health care to provide on-site urgent or nonurgent care. Niagara emergency medical services (NEMS) started MIH in 2018 to serve the Niagara region of Ontario, Canada. This article summarizes research conducted to assess its economic impact, by exploring whether mobile integrated health care (MIH) delivered by emergency medical services is more efficient than regular ambulance responses in addressing the needs of urgent care in the community.
This economic evaluation compared 1,740 calls serviced by MIH in 2018 to 2019 with propensity score–matched ambulance calls for the same period and 2 years prior and found that MIH was associated with a decrease in the proportion of patients transported to the emergency department and saved health care costs compared with regular ambulance responses.
These findings suggest that MIH is a promising and viable solution to meeting urgent health care needs while improving the efficiency in using emergency care resources.
Published By: JAMA Netw Open. Authors: Feng Xie, PhD, Jiajun Yan, Msc & Gina Agarwal, MBBS, PhD, McMaster University; and Richard Ferron, Niagara Emergency Medical Services
Publication Date: February 24, 2021