Alberta Ambulance takeover on hold

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Health region to move ahead with ambulance transition

Postby five_alarm » Wed Mar 09, 2005 2:00 pm

FAIRVIEW, AB - Alberta Health and Wellness Minister Iris Evans announced that Peace Country Health (PCH) and the Palliser Health Region will move ahead and take over ambulance services on April 1 as pilot projects.

Ambulance services in the other health regions will not be transferred from municipal control in April as previously scheduled.

PCH chairman Marvin Moore said he was pleased that the region will be able to move forward as planned. PCH has been allocated $6.1 million to make the transfer a reality.

SOURCE: Fairview Post
Last edited by five_alarm on Wed Mar 09, 2005 2:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Province antes up ambulance cash

Postby five_alarm » Wed Mar 09, 2005 2:03 pm

EDMONTON, AB - The province will dole out $55 million to municipalities after the government backed off a promise to take over ambulance service next month, says Alberta Health Minister Iris Evans. And while city officials say they're relieved yesterday's announcement addresses some municipalities' immediate budget shortfalls, they still want the province to plan for future ambulance funding.

"I think what we're looking for is a long-term solution," said Bob Hawkesworth, a Calgary alderman and president of the Alberta Urban Municipalities Association.

SOURCE: Edmonton Sun

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Lots of blame for ambulance fiasco

Postby five_alarm » Thu Mar 10, 2005 3:18 pm

EDMONTON, AB - If success has many fathers and failure is an orphan, then the government's ambulance service fiasco is a bastard child.

Its parents are Alberta's politicians and bureaucrats who conceived the idea with faulty information and then left it to gestate during the "red zone" of the provincial election campaign. Instead of a $55-million love child we ended up with a $128-million mongrel not even a health minister could love.

It's certainly not an orphan even though it's a failure. This health-care Rosemary's baby has more parents than a PTA picnic. None are willing to sign the birth certificate, though. Everyone is blaming everyone else for the conception.

Source: Edmonton Journal

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Fairview ambulance service to join PCH

Postby five_alarm » Tue Mar 22, 2005 1:19 pm

FAIRVIEW, AB - Peace Country Health (PCH) has been given the go-ahead to take over providing ambulance services on April 1.

The region is one of two test projects which will take place this year. Originally the provincial government planned to have all health regions in the province providing ambulance service in April but higher than anticipated costs forced the government to reconsider, Minister of Health and Wellness Iris Evans said. PCH has been allocated $6.1 million for the pilot project.


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Cancelled transfer poses no problem

Postby five_alarm » Tue Mar 22, 2005 1:37 pm

DRAYTON VALLEY, AB - It was supposed to be the final meeting of the Pembina Valley Regional Ambulance Authority, but instead of the anticipated swan song, members were busy putting plans back in place after the provincial government officially cancelled its planned takeover of ambulance services.

“It was a surprise,” said Brazeau County representative Tim Mitchell. “We thought we would be disbanding then we realized we had to go and renew our contract with Associated Ambulance.”

The authority, which is made up of representatives from nine municipalities including Brazeau County, Drayton Valley and Breton had already proceeded to cancel their contract with Associated Ambulance after April of this year to allow the government to take over.


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Postby FireEMTGuy » Tue Mar 22, 2005 8:32 pm

Associated does a good job. I have a feeling that in the end things will stay status quo with the only change being the funding will come from the health region instead of the municipality.

Just a guess.

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City bills province

Postby five_alarm » Wed Mar 23, 2005 2:13 pm

AIRDRIE, AB - The city will be billing the province for $223,000 – the budget shortfall which Airdrie will incur in 2005 as a result of the province’s March 3 announcement that funding and governance of ground ambulance service will remain the realm of municipalities.

After unanimously passing the motion during Airdrie city council’s Monday night meeting, members expressed concern not only with how the province’s solution of spreading $55 million – the amount it originally allotted to health regions to begin paying for the service as of April 1 – to municipalities on a per capita basis is not enough for some communities, but how it seems to be too much for others.


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Postby FireEMTGuy » Fri Apr 01, 2005 12:38 am

Email I recieved:

Town, P.C.H deadlocked

by mark rieder
R-G Staff Writer
Tuesday March 29, 2005

Peace River Record Gazette - A March 22 meeting between Peace Country
health and the Town of Peace River ended in a stalemate on the future of
ambulance service.

In a strongly worded press release, the Town said they were "deeply
disappointed with the actions of Peace Country health", March 23.
In the press release, the Town stated they were under the impression the
meeting would be an open negotiation of ambulance delivery.

"Instead we received their two alternatives," Mayor Lorne Mann stated in
the release.

The Town was given the option of joining the pilot project and signing
over their assets or going it alone without financial assistance from
the province.

"Unfortunately, both scenarios negatively impact the residents of the
town," stated the release.

The Town's position is that losing their integrated fire and ambulance
service will "result in a reduced quality of service to town residents"
and "also cause a deterioration of service to the entire region".

Marvin Moore, Peace Country health board chair, disputed these claims at
a hastily called a press conference after the meeting.

"We think there's not a big issue there in concern to the response
time," he said.

Council will discuss the offer and make a final decision at the March 29
council meeting.

The Town has until April 1 to inform the health region if they will take
part in the pilot project.

"By April 1st somebody has to be responsible [for making a decision],"
said Moore.

The pilot project will be an on going initiative, beyond just one year
of operation.

"There's no turning back here. It's going to remain, in my view, for the
long-term." He said.

If the Town refuses the transfer, they will not receive any of the $55
million in funding the province has promised other municipalities as
compensation for dropping the province-wide ambulance transfer.
The province has promised a $16.00 per capita pay-out to the
municipalities. Peace Country health is getting $46.00 per capita for
their project. That includes Peace River's share, even if the town does
not take part.

"PCH will not even consider transferring the $16.00 per capita amount to
the town that every other municipality is receiving," says the press

Another concern from the Town is compensation for the over $250,000.00
they have invested in the EMS equipment that would be taken over by the
health region.

The communities that make up Peace Regional Emergency Medical Services
(PREMS) agreed to sign over their assets, well in excess of the amount
the Town of Peace River has invested.

Joyce Sydnes, CAO for the MD of Peace #135, said they had no qualms
about the decision.

"We feel that's the right thing to do," she said, adding the taxpayers
paid for the assets and they are still being used for the taxpayers'

Paul Ramer, PREMS manager, said he had heard no concerns over
compensation from any of the communities that comprise the service.

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Peace River still trying to get commitments before handing over ambulance

Postby five_alarm » Thu Feb 09, 2006 11:31 am

PEACE RIVER, AB - While both Peace Country Health and Peace River seem to have found a common ground as to how a provincial ambulance service will be delivered in town, an agreement may yet be far off as too many questions remain unanswered. Peace River opted to not join Peace Country Health when it took over ambulances services last spring as one of only two health authorities in Alberta to do so as pilot study. The town had recently invested in new equipment and training to develop an integrated fire/ambulance service.

In letters back and forth over the past two months, the two sides identified that a Peace River service would see advanced life support paramedics stationed at the Peace River Community Health Centre 24 hours a day, seven days a week along with the same being provided from the Peace River Airport. PCH said it would also offer employment opportunities to all existing Peace River ambulance personnel.



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Integrated Fire/EMS Peace River

Postby FireChiefGuy » Thu Feb 09, 2006 1:16 pm

It is important that every member of Integrated Fire and EMS in the Province of Alberta be aware of what has/is happening with the Peace River Fire Department/Town of Peace River/Peace Country Health with relation to EMS Governance. The pilot project has sought to disband the integrated service from day one, however the Town of Peace River has been dilligent in wanting to get the answers to questions that may never be answered. I will keep you posted. Keep up the good work with the website.

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