Infant Transport Team Paramedic (ITT)
The BCEHS Infant Transport Team (ITT) represents the most highly specialized critical care paramedics in Canada.
Currently, the ITT program is the only paramedic-based critical care transport team in the world that provides tertiary care to three distinct specialty patient populations. ITT paramedics are specially educated to provide critical care in the pre-hospital and inter-hospital environment for neonatal, pediatric and obstetrical patients.
Transport of these teams is by whatever conveyance is available and appropriate, whether by ambulance, helicopter or fixed wing airplane. The teams are based at BC Children’s & Women’s Health Centre in Vancouver. In addition to inter-hospital critical care transport, the team does targeted pre-hospital responses in the greater Vancouver area and surrounding communities.
The Infant Transport Team has a long history of service within BC. The program would see paramedics providing care for neonatal patients that required transport to the Special Care Nursery housed within Vancouver General Hospital. As time progressed, so did the vision of the roles and responsibilities the team could assume within the critical care transport realm. After several years it was felt that these paramedics could also transport sick pediatric patients. This process was long and carefully planned out by the neonatal, pediatric, and obstetric specialty physicians that have directed the education and provided the clinical oversight for the Team.
With each new training program, there have been advances in care and educational strategies. The current education program is 18 intensive months long, with successful completion resulting in a CCP license with a pediatric specialty. Exhaustive reviews of the ITT program have been performed and continue to be revisited routinely to ensure that the most up-to-date and evidence-based medicine is being taught and consistent, high-quality care is being carried out.
A physician group provides direct and constant oversight within all specialty areas. All education, whether initial training or continued development, focuses on clinical concepts with close attention to pathophysiology and evidence-based medicine. This understanding aims to allow the ITT paramedic to be the eyes and ears of the intensivists, neonatologists, and perinatologists that coordinate the critical care transports. There is a close working relationship between the ITT and the physician groups within Children’s Hospital.
The Infant Transport Team are respected and valued members of the critical care health delivery team. Communities around the province have come to respect and appreciate the service that the ITT has provided with dedication, skill and compassion for over 40 years.