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CaraMedics help keep patients out of hospital

Professional dog trainer Carole Baikow, who has struggled recently with falls, pneumonia and COPD, credits CaraMedics with helping her remain mobile and independent. (Photo credit: WLOS staff)

A program that retrains some critical care paramedics to also be educators is paying off.

One Weaverville woman credits CaraMedics with helping her remain mobile and independent.

Professional dog trainer Carole Baikow has struggled recently with falls, pneumonia and COPD.

"It does prevent me from doing the things I've always done," Baikow said.

Experienced critical care paramedic Chris Brackett is now a Mission Health CaraMedic who makes home visits to assess and educate patients, like Baikow, with the goal of reducing hospital admissions.

"Well, we set up a pattern of visits where I would come every week," Brackett explained.

"He'd take my vitals, and he'd teach me me about the oxygen," Baikow said of Brackett.

Just like a dog trainer, Baikow has taken control, and it has paid off for her health.

"The result has been that she's more mobile. She has portable oxygen that allows her to get out of the home without fear," Brackett said. "She re-admits less to the hospital, so she stays healthier for longer."

"My goal is to keep living, keep moving, keep cooking and just being a part of the world," Baikow added.

All the while, she's maintaining her independence safely at home.

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