In January of 2006, Distress Centres began its partnership with Toronto’s Emergency Medical Services in the provision of a dedicated warm transfer line for suicidal callers. While at-risk individuals who have already provided their contact information are waiting for the arrival of an ambulance, the dispatcher transfers the call to Distress Centres volunteer responders to provide compassionate crisis support until EMS arrives on the scene.
This program frees up the relatively more costly EMS dispatcher to respond to other emergencies, while at the same time providing the most appropriate emotional care for the distressed individual. It also familiarizes callers experiencing chronic mental health concerns with a new resource which they can access independently in the future.
The EMS Warm transfer fine provides support to high-risk individuals navigating suicidal circumstances until emergency services arrive on the scene. Through our partnership with Toronto Emergency Medical Services, EMS dispatchers transfer these individuals to us as their team is dispatched.