Ambulance service review getting started

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Minister asking people to add their two cents online or by mail

As a review of provincial ambulance services gets underway, the focus will be on determining how to have the most efficient and effective ambulance operations the government can establish, according to recent statements from the provincial Minister of Health.

The consultant conducting the review — the partnership of Fitch-Helleur — will be contacting businesses and service providers considered to be stakeholders in the review. Private consultation sessions with these stakeholders will begin on Jan. 14.

However, members of the public are also being encouraged to offer their opinions and recommendations, either online or by mail.

“Our government acknowledges that access to quality ambulance services is of particular importance in rural and remote areas of the province. I encourage Newfoundlanders and Labradorians to participate in this consultation process so we can have a meaningful dialogue about the provincial ambulance program and how it can best serve the needs of the people of our province,” stated Minister of Health and Community Services Susan Sullivan, in a government news release Friday.

The ambulance service review will look at road ambulances, and air ambulance services offered with both planes and helicopters.

In addition to taking submissions from within the province, the review will include a look at best practices in other places and the consultant will offer recommendations on operations, staffing, technology, patient transfer and other related topics.

A review report will be completed for the Health minister and used in decisions on how best to deploy resources in future.

“As stewards of the public purse, it is our government’s responsibility to maximize every dollar we spend. We know there are efficiencies to be found within the Provincial Ambulance Program and this review will ensure patients receive the best possible care as effectively and efficiently as possible,” Sullivan stated.

If making a submission for the review online, go to the mainpage of the provincial Department of Health and Community Services, a “Provincial Ambulance Review” icon can be found there to take you to the relevant page.

The online submission form is in the form of a survey, however there is area for written submission and comment at the end.

If submitting something by mail, send to: Newfoundland and Labrador Ambulance Program Review, c/o Jane Helleur and Associates Inc., P.O. Box 21041, St. John’s, NL, A1A 5B2.

It is requested you include some kind of indication of what area of the province you are writing from, to assist with the consultant’s work.

The consultant, Fitch-Helleur, is a partnership of Fitch and Associates from Plattsville, Missouri, USA, and Jane Helleur and Associates out of St. John’s and has taken on the task of completing the review under a $250,000 contract with the provincial government.

Organizations: Community Services Susan Sullivan, Department of Health and Community, Jane Helleur and Associates Inc., P.O. Box 21041 Fitch and Associates

Geographic location: Newfoundland and Labrador, Plattsville, Missouri USA

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Recent comments

  • J
    December 30, 2012 - 14:51

    All Paramedic/Abulance services should be run by the Provincial Government and it's respective Health Authority's.

  • NL Paramedicine
    December 29, 2012 - 19:58

    Please join our public discussion page on Facebook at Practicioners are also invited to joining our private discussion group through methods specified on our Facebook page.

  • Tim Jamison
    December 29, 2012 - 12:21

    This city should not have even one basic life support truck in it doing emerg calls. Every one of them should be ALS and the transfer trucks could be BLS and there needs to be way more of them. Also, every service in the province should be amalgamated to provide continuity of service

  • Transfers
    December 28, 2012 - 15:53

    Step 1) Have at least one ambulance in the City and similar areas dedicated to inter-hospital transfers only. Patients often have to go from one hospital to another depending on the availability of specialists, equipment, or beds. The only way to do this is through the ambulances. Sometimes the admitted patient has to wait for up to a couple of hours on a stretcher or the emergecny patient has to wait for an ambulance to finish a non-emergency transfer. Neither is a good situation and many health care systems throughout Canada have dedicated inter-hospital transfer ambulances.