Imagine a world with more paramedics.
That’s the message of a hard-hitting, province-wide campaign the Ambulance Paramedics and Emergency Dispatchers of BC (CUPE 873) have launched to raise public awareness about the distress calls emergency dispatchers answer every day.
“This campaign brings the public up close and personal to B.C.’s most common public issues and medical emergencies, seen through the eyes of B.C.’s paramedics,” said CUPE 873 President Bronwyn Barter.
The campaign ads and website use graphic imagery and powerful messages to raise awareness around the essential services provided by B.C. paramedics and emergency dispatchers—and call for more government support and resources.
“Given their superior level of training and equipment, B.C. paramedics are the only frontline medical professionals qualified to handle patients during a medical crisis for early assessment, critical intervention, treatment, monitoring, transport and continuum of care to the emergency room and hospital,” said Barter.
“But over the past 15 years, we’ve seen call volumes increase. With that comes an increased demand for resources, and we don’t believe Government has kept up with the demand for more resources and funding of our ambulance service.”
Although the provincial government is adding $91.4 million in additional funding over the next three years for emergency health services, CUPE 873 says this is not enough. Currently, the national average wait time goal is eight minutes and 59 seconds. In British Columbia, this goal is only being met 30 per cent of the time.