The Office of the Official Opposition is condemning the unacceptable wait times for ambulance to hospital care transfers and the lack of action from the Higgs Government.
“Over the weekend, the Moncton Hospital and the Georges-L-Dumont Hospital saw ambulances parked for a total of over 100 hours while the paramedics waited to transfer the patient from their care to hospital care” says Official Opposition Leader Roger Melanson. “Paramedics play a vital role in New Brunswick’s health care system, but they can’t play that role to its fullest when they’re parked outside the hospital.”
The average delay for transferring a patient from an ambulance to hospital care has jumped significantly in the last year yet reducing these wait times was not specifically mentioned in Minister Shephard’s health reform plan.
“The Minster indicated these delays would be addressed through improving primary care. While I understand that can have an impact on easing emergency room wait times, it does not directly address the issue” says Melanson. “Our hospital system needs more staff! Where are the efforts to recruit more health care professionals so that we can increase hospital capacity? Where are the investments and initiatives to keep recent graduates in the province? Where is the urgency and seriousness this issue warrants?”
As the MLA for Moncton-Centre, Rob McKee, was very concerned to hear of the situation at the Moncton Hospitals over the weekend.
“This isn’t a problem that is unique to Moncton, but we are one of the largest cities in the province and have two hospitals. We should have a lot of capacity here, how has the situation deteriorated to the point that ambulances are parked for over a hundred hours in a weekend?” says McKee. “This could become an issue of life and death, and the longer Government continues to ignore this problem, the more responsibility they carry.”