On Friday a report aired on the TVA program J.E. that discussed the issue of performance targets for Quebec’s paramedic services not being met, and the numerous of people who have been impacted by the situation. The Fraternité des travailleurs et travailleuses du préhospitalier du Québec (FTPQ), CUPE 7300, regrets to note that, yet again, possible pathways to solutions did not come up during discussions with stakeholders called upon to voice their opinions on this particular matter.

“In Quebec, ambulances are primarily seen as a profit generator. This has been the underlying thinking behind decisions made in the past twenty years whenever the topic of ambulance coverage came up. As long as private sector companies provide this service, the profit motive will always override the interests of patients. Nationalization of emergency care services across Quebec is the only solution,” said Benoit Cowell, president of the FTPQ.

Quebec is divided into 191 operating zones which, except for the Montreal and Laval regions, fall under the responsibility of private ambulance companies, which are fully funded by the public sector and very lucrative. The current system is not transparent, which means that true accountability is lost in the mix, as the auditor general pointed out in their report in 2020.