Ornge Fellowship

Meet Dr Johannes von Vopelius-Feldt

2021 Prehospital and Transport Medicine Fellow

August 10, 2021

10 August, 2021



| By: Par:

Sydney Gibbs

Ornge's Prehospital and Transport Medicine Fellowship is an annual program where a selected physician gains mastery of procedures, equipment, and the environment where Ornge operates.

The 2021 Fellow is Dr. Johannes von Vopelius-Feldt, an Emergency Medicine Physician who most recently worked out of a major trauma centre in Bristol England. With an education background that spans both Scotland and Germany, Johannes’ vast experience gave him a keen interest in research and prehospital care.

“I was looking for an opportunity to build on my UK training and experience. Caring for critically injured or ill patients, together with the challenges of the prehospital environment will challenge me to become a better clinician,” said Johannes.
One month into the Fellowship, Johannes has already joined a team to practice simulation events, handle equipment, and gain knowledge about the best practices within pre-hospital care.
“This is a really great opportunity to learn different aspects of prehospital care in a unique setting,” said Johannes. “Although the team is small they have been dedicated to work with me which enables learning on both sides. The Fellowship as a whole is a collaborative experience designed to benefit the fellow and team while facilitating educational understandings.”

(PHOTO: Tara Williams- Paramedic, Johannes von Vopelius-Feldt- Fellow, Brad Baumber-Paramedic)

On his first mission, Johannes witnessed a challenge presented by the unique population density of Ontario. His patient, a young man who had suffered severe traumatic injuries, was at a remote hospital. The patient required emergency surgery for ongoing internal bleeding, however, retrieving this patient required complex logistics that included aircraft refuelling on route. On arrival, the team worked with local staff to stabilize and prepare the patient for transfer.

“Due to the severity of the injuries and the resulting ongoing bleeding, the local hospital’s blood transfusion products were nearly depleted. An Ornge Transport Medicine Physician, who remotely supervises Ornge paramedics, was able to arrange further blood products to be picked up halfway between the local hospital and the receiving trauma centre. Once we arrived to the trauma centre, the patient was quickly transferred to the Operating Room for life-saving surgery. I have no doubt that this patient would not have survived his injuries without the team work and resources provided by Ornge.”
When asked about his overall experience, Johannes expressed his admiration for the excitement and support he received his teammates, who showed a desire to facilitate a positive experience for him.
Over the next year, Johannes will spend time working hand-in-hand with his new team, and will get the opportunity to add physician-specific skills to situations, as well aspractice within Northern Ontario.

“The regional air ambulance which I worked with in the UK covered an area comparable to the Greater Toronto Area; in contrast, the Toronto Island Base where I have been dispatched from during the Fellowship covers an area equivalent to the whole Southwest of England. As an organization, their reach covers an area approximately the size of the UK, France and Germany combined.” Said Johannes, “with that geography comes Ornge’s role in achieving health equity, particularly in Northern remote regions.”
Johannes also had some advice for candidates thinking of applying for the 2022 Fellowship: “There is a real opportunity here for experienced candidates to learn and develop aspects of prehospital and transport medicine in a unique setting. The team supporting the Fellowship is small and dedicated so there is flexibility to adjust the programme to the Fellow’s needs. In addition, the organization is keen to listen to and learn from experiences elsewhere, so Fellows can share best practice from their previous training and contribute to an exchange of ideas amongst dedicated care providers.”
Welcome to the team Johannes!


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