The NDP Candidate in St. John's Centre is appalled by the revelations in an Eastern Health briefing note obtained through access to information by a local media outlet.
"Successive Liberal and Conservative government neglect have led to an ambulance situation that even Eastern Health describes as 'dangerously understaffed,'" Jim Dinn said today.
The report reveals that the ambulance service in St. John's is "unable to meet call demands for both emergency and non-emergency responses." In just one year, there were more than 2000 points in time where no ambulances were available to respond to calls. The reasons are diverse, ranging from an above-average number of ambulance transports to delays in off-loading patients at emergency rooms.
"None of this should be news to government," Dinn said today. "These same problems were flagged in a 2015 report. Paramedics and their union have repeatedly asked for action in that five-year period. Government has obviously done little or nothing to address the situation in that time."
A particularly troubling aspect for Dinn is that it took a media Access to Information request for the alarming numbers to be made public.
"The public would never have known of this situation without the Access to Information request – what other bad news is government keeping secret?" he asked.