Ambulances responding more quickly to Island 911 calls says province

Ambulance response times have improved by 49 seconds on average across the province — dropping from 9 minutes and 12 seconds three months ago down to 8 minutes and 23 seconds as of the end of last month.

Health PEI credits additional ambulance and new dispatch system for improvement

Average response times have improved on the Island by 49 seconds despite call volumes going up 2 per cent over the last three months. (Bill Van Asperen/CBC)

Paramedics are getting to the scene of 911 calls more quickly in the last three months, says Health PEI.  

Ambulance response times have improved by 49 seconds on average across the province — dropping from 9:12 three months ago down to 8:23 as of the end of last month.

Health PEI credits the addition of another ambulance, stationed in the St. Peter's area serving Kings County and the capital region, and a new computerized dispatch system which Island EMS has been using since October last year. 

"Through recent investments in an additional ambulance and new computerized dispatch technology, Island EMS is now able to strategically locate ambulances where they are needed most, making the best possible use of these health care resources," noted Health and Wellness Minister Robert Henderson in a news release.

Adding an additional ambulance in the Kings County region and a new computerized dispatch system Island EMS is using have improved response times, says Health PEI. (Health PEI)

The total number of 911 calls ambulances responded to increased from 2,777 to 2,835 — a two per cent increase over the same period. 

Average response time for the Island's six ambulance coverage zones:

  • Souris region – 3:45 seconds faster – drops to 8:06 from 11:51
  • Montague region – 52 seconds faster – drops to 11:32 from 12:24
  • Charlottetown area – 13 seconds faster – drops to 8:37 from 8:50
  • Summerside region – 12 seconds faster – drops to 7:11 from 7:23
  • O'Leary region – 1:25 slower – rises to 11:45 from 10:20 
  •  Alberton region – 22 seconds faster – drops to 11:29 from 11:51

The Computerized Assisted Dispatch (CAD) software uses GPS so dispatchers can see where the closest ambulance is to the call. It also tracks response times, call volumes and the nature of the calls, all of which have allowed Island EMS to analyse the best place to locate ambulances for quicker response times, according to Health PEI. 


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