The Chief of the Vancouver Fire Department says he’s interested in training up his firefighters to provide advanced on-scene medical care while patients wait for an ambulance.
The move in Delta, without the approval of BC Emergency Health Services, has been criticized by paramedics who say the issue is a lack of resources, and Delta firefighters are acting illegally.
But Vancouver Fire Chief John Mckearney says a committee has been struck to look at pre-hospital care.
“That would include looking at first responder skill sets working up to EMR level, but no definitive answer yet.”
He says around 65% of the time, firefighters arrive on scene first.
He adds ambulance response times have increased since changes were made a few years ago.
“The bottom line here is just to give a higher level of care to our citizens while we are waiting for the ambulance to arrive.”
Prince George, Sun Peaks and Big White firefighters already perform advanced on-scene medical training.
Big White’s Fire Chief tells CKNW it’s been a success and other municipalities should follow suit.