Province Supports New Paramedic Positions in Western, Southern Manitoba
July 30, 2015
New Paramedics to Help Manitobans When They Need it Most: Premier Selinger
SWAN RIVER—Thirty front-line paramedics will be hired to provide better care closer to home for families in the Prairie Mountain Health and Southern Health–Santé Sud regional health authorities, Premier Greg Selinger announced here today.
“Paramedics are often the first to care for critically injured patients and it’s important to invest in more front-line positions to ensure care is available as soon as possible,” said Premier Selinger. “These positions will create more jobs for paramedics and help to reduce response times in western and southern Manitoba.”
The new paramedics will be stationed throughout the two regional health authorities to replace standby positions with full-time staff.
“The investment in new paramedic positions for priority areas in Prairie Mountain Health will contribute to a more sustainable, responsive emergency medical services system,” said Penny Gilson, chief executive officer, Prairie Mountain Health. “Moving more stations toward the goal of around-the-clock in-station coverage instead of relying heavily on standby paramedics will support staff and ensure more consistent services for area residents.”
The paramedics hired to work in the Prairie Mountain Health region will primarily be located in Winnipegosis, Mafeking, Melita and Deloraine. Those hired to work in the Southern Health–Santé Sud region will primarily be located in MacGregor and Oak Bluff.
“We anticipate the additions of the new front-line paramedic positions in Southern Health–Santé Sud will help us further stabilize our workforce as we continue to provide quality, safe care to area residents,” said Kathy McPhail, chief executive officer, Southern Health–Santé Sud.
The premier noted these new full-time paramedic positions are part of the government’s continuing efforts over the past 15 years to create a much more modern, effective and co-ordinated EMS system, particularly in rural and northern Manitoba. He added these initiatives are part of the government’s 10-year plan to implement the recommendations of the Manitoba EMS System Review, which was conducted in 2013.
“As call volumes in rural Manitoba continue to increase, the reliance on paramedics to be on-call poses a number of challenges that can affect both patients and staff,” said Jodi Possia, chair, Paramedic Association of Manitoba. “The EMS System Review recommended the transition to
full-time paramedic staffing across the province to address these issues and we’re pleased to see that these recommendations continue to be implemented.”
The premier noted the implementation of the EMS review recommendations also includes a new advanced-care paramedic program at Red River College that will be launched this fall. The two-year program will help enhance the level of emergency care available in rural Manitoba and will be delivered to an annual intake of 16 students, he added.
Additional recent investments include providing an estimated $11 million each year to fund the full patient cost of inter-facility transports.
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