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Most Canadians support the idea of expanded role for paramedics: survey

Last Updated Oct 2, 2016 at 11:36 am PDT

File photo. (Photo by Dustin Godfrey for NEWS 1130)
Summary

The training paramedics have in most provinces across the country might allow them to do more in the system

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – When you see an ambulance pulling onto your street, you know it’s likely an emergency but what if paramedics were there only to offer a basic health assessment, some minor treatment and then referral to a family doctor?

David Coletto with Abacus Data says a survey finds most Canadians support the idea of an expanded role for paramedics in our health care system.

“The vast majority think they can and support the idea of community paramedicine. I think it comes down to what our survey found. For the most part, we trust out doctors and nurses but we also see that paramedics are trained and have the expertise and we trust them to make on-the-spot decisions.”

Coletto says the training that they have in most provinces across the country might allow them to do more in the system. “That might be shifting their role from traditional emergency response to non-traditional roles like diagnosing or going into the community and working on non-life-threatening situations.”

Only three per cent of those surveyed were opposed to the idea.