Patient Advocate Team
Patient Advocate Team (PAT) Statement of Purpose
Washington Ambulance Association’s PAT team was organized by Chief Susie Wallace-Wyant in 2004 to assist with the Secondary Patient (SP) in a critical incident. The SP could be, but is not limited to, a spouse, partner, child, parent, caregiver, friend, teacher, coach, colleague or other. In given situations, an EMS call may have Secondary Patient(s) needing assistance in addition to the Primary Patient(s). The primary purpose and focus of a PAT member is to help the SP.
A PAT member is dispatched through the Litchfield County Dispatch when the call is initiated by the WAA crew, or automatically when certain calls are dispatched. For instance, if the Dispatcher determines a patient is in cardiac arrest, in addition to dispatching EMS responders, there will also be a dispatch for PAT.
The duties of a PAT member may include:
- Caring for immediate needs, ie. suitable clothing for weather, water, safety, etc.
- Notifying the patient’s immediate family membersAssisting in selection of a funeral home
- Locating the appropriate clergy member based on person’s faith/spiritual orientation
- Coordinating the care of other members of the household such as minor children
- Arranging for transportation to and/or from the hospital
- Referring family members to support groups
- Arranging use of telephones
- Providing directions to area hospitals
When responding to a PAT call, PAT members carry a PAT Binder which contains the following resources: maps, Patient Information sheets, contact information for support groups, hospitals, clergy, hotels and more.
PAT members are specially trained and may have experiences in dealing with death and dying. This makes them competent and especially empathetic in these situations.
The PAT team is led by Pastor Linda Williams. PAT members can be identified by their WAA PAT members’ bright blue vest and ID tag.