Strathmore ambulances have recently been sent to Calgary on a far too frequent basis, but that could be changing in the near future.

Associate Executive Director of EMS Operations in the Calgary Zone Randy Bryksa presented at Wednesday's town council meeting about how Strathmore will improve response times and keep our ambulances in the community.

One of the big changes made was converting two flex ambulances into permanent community ambulances. Before, Strathmore only had one 24/7 Advanced Life Support (ALS) ambulance, with the two flex ambulances being on call. One of the flexes became a 24/7 Basic Life Support (BLS) ambulance, while the other became a peak BLS ambulance, with peak meaning Mon-Fri, 0900-1724 military time. This change was made in July so there is no data yet on how this impacted us, but Bryksa expects it to create a huge positive change.

Strathmore ambulances responded to 73% of Strathmore calls from April-June 2022, which was down from 77% from 2021's yearly total. However, Bryksa expects this number to go back up with some other changes being made.

"We've moved the Chestermere resource from a 12-hour resource to a 24-hour resource, that occurred on August 15. So we should start to see the benefit of that because Strathmore resources were going out to servicing Chestermere and surrounding community."

"Strathmore resources are staying in the community longer now, and are going into Calgary less." 

Another huge change came to the metro response plan, which happened on Feb. 7. This plan refers to how Calgary calls in ambulances from rural communities, and Bryksa said they changed their response plan to make sure Strathmore resources stay in Strathmore. 

"In August of 2022 after the implementation of the metro response plan, the last 12 week average shows they're (Strathmore ambulances) coming into the city (Calgary) 7.1 times per week, compared to previously 46.2 times per week. This is telling me your resources are staying in the community, and that's what we set out to do and we're very successful around that."

Bryska also noted that Strathmore's median response time is less than 10 minutes, which is good, but he hopes to bring that time even lower.

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