In a major change for Ambulance NB, the Higgs government has announced that patient transfers are being separated from emergency first responses into two services.
The move is designed to improve response times given that about 30 per cent of calls for the ambulance system are now made up of patient transfers.
Health minister Hugh Flemming says the changes will mean 40 casual positions will become full-time whether the paramedics speak English or French.
“When you are doing a patient transfer, it’s not an emergency… in the sense that you can plan in advance, you can figure out and know what the language requirements are… you can schedule around that,” he says.
Flemming maintains the issues Ambulance NB has faced are more about labour supply than language.
An online accountability website with response times and vehicle downtimes is also coming but Flemming didn’t provide details at this time.