Province Moving Forward With Centralizing Local EMS Dispatch Site

The province is moving forward with its plans to centralize the local EMS Dispatch sites from Wood Buffalo, Calgary, Red Deer, and Lethbridge.

Health Minister Tyler Shandro sent a letter to the mayors of the four communities on Friday stating he would not be reversing Alberta Health Services’ plan to transition operations to one of the three provincial centres.

He continues to claim nothing will change for those who need to call 9-1-1.

“A province-wide EMS dispatch system will improve patient care through more efficient coordination of all EMS resources, which allows EMS to send the closest available ambulance to a patient regardless of geographical boundaries.”

However, the RMWB has continued to deny this.

According to Regional Emergency Services, in around 90 per cent of calls local dispatchers send out ambulances around 48 seconds faster and verify addresses around 30 seconds quicker than their provincial counterparts.

“It is clear to us that the current system best serves our region including how we collaborate with our industry partners and Indigenous communities,” added Mayor Don Scott in a statement.

Speaking on Fort McMurray Matters, Scott noted they would consider all options to stop this move including potential legal action.

The centralization is expected to happen over the next three to four months.

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