Funding announcement means no additional paramedics

Health Sciences Association of Alberta (HSAA) President, Mike Parker reacts to claims money is being made available for 100 paramedic positions in Alberta.

Edmonton — The announcement claiming funding has been made available for 100 paramedic positions in Alberta is a mixed news story for HSAA and Albertans.

“HSAA is happy 70 casual paramedics will now be getting the benefits that we have been calling for since the beginning of the pandemic,” said HSAA President and Advanced Care Paramedic, Mike Parker. “I am also pleased funding has been extended to keep 30 full-time paramedics on our streets and in our communities.”

“While this funding is important to bolster and maintain 100 already existing positions, it doesn’t actually add a single paramedic to our overburdened health system,” continues Parker. “It doesn’t solve the issue of not having enough members hired. Every shift is being run short. Without hiring more new paramedics, the current government continues to put the system, our members, and every Albertan needing urgent medical care, at risk.”

Parker concluded, “We need Alberta Health Services to hire more paramedics immediately. This announcement does nothing to overcome the hiring crisis affecting emergency medical services, or AHS in general.”