New am­bu­lance com­ing

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - THE PROVINCE - BY DAVE STEWART THE GUARDIAN dstew­art@the­ Twit­­wart

A sec­ond am­bu­lance will be op­er­at­ing in eastern Kings County by the fall.

Pressed by Souris-Elmira MLA Colin LaVie in the P.E.I. leg­is­la­ture Fri­day, Health Min­is­ter Doug Cur­rie said it was com­ing and that it would op­er­ate 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

It will be a new am­bu­lance and won’t sim­ply be trans­ferred from one area of the province to eastern P.E.I.

It will cost gov­ern­ment $800,000 in the cur­rent fis­cal year.

“That ve­hi­cle has been or­dered and will be in op­er­a­tion by the fall,’’ Cur­rie told The Guardian fol­low­ing ques­tion pe­riod.

Cur­rie added that the depart­ment will also be im­ple­ment­ing a new com­puter sys­tem to eval­u­ate re­sponse times in the east for am­bu­lances so they can get a bet­ter han­dle on where the pres­sures and de­mands are.

Since 2007, there has been an in­crease of ap­prox­i­mately 7,000 calls per year and a jump of about 400 out-of-province ex­changes.

“We have rec­og­nized in the past that some of the re­sponse times have been a lit­tle longer than in some ar­eas of the province. The whole ob­jec­tive is to keep emer­gency re­sponse times un­der a level we can pro­vide the best care and best ac­cess that we can.’’

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