Could Quebec City’s ambulance services be improved?

Could Quebec City’s ambulance services be improved?

Quebec City (Quebec) 4 June 2015 – In a recent symposium on ambulance service in the Quebec region it was discovered that, although the ambulances get their patients to the hospitals in plenty of time, there seems to be a problem once the vehicle arrives and parks at the emergency entrance to the hospital itself.

The average wait time, once an ambulance has arrived at a hospital in Quebec City, calculated by the SPU (Services Préhospitaliers d’Urgence) or pre-hospital emergency services, has been found to be on average 40.9 minutes. This includes the time from when the vehicle arrives, unloads its patient, and leaves the premises. The average time for the province is 38.8 minutes. So even if the emergency vehicle gets you to the hospital in record time you may still have to stay in the vehicle for some extra time until your stretcher can be wheeled into the proper authorities. The problem is more acute if there happens to be another ambulance already in the reception bay.

The managing director of the Quebec Ambulance Services (CTAQ), Marc Munger doesn’t blame the hospitals but wants a study on the pre-hospital procedures and the triage system that exists at the present time. He claims there is room for improvement when he compares our services to that of Nova Scotia for example, where the wait time in hospitals is a mere 20 minutes. On the south shore of Quebec City the average wait time in a hospital is 23.8 minutes.

Right now the CTAQ has a staff numbering 250 as compared to 1993 when it was only 100. The “Cooperative” expects the number of calls for emergency vehicles to increase by 2 to 5% over the next few years due to the aging population in the province.

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