Additional ambulances on the streets in Calgary & Edmonton

July 5, 2022

New ambulance

New ambulance

CALGARY– Nine additional ambulances are now serving patients in Calgary and Edmonton, helping to relieve some pressure on EMS, and reducing demand on EMS support from neighbouring communities.

Of the nine net-new ambulances, all of which are now operational, four are in Calgary and five are in Edmonton. Additionally, four new Non-Ambulance Transport (NAT) vehicles have been added in Edmonton.

These new ambulances, funded through $16 million included in the current provincial Budget, are one component of the AHS EMS 10 Point Plan to address sustained extreme call volume, and ensure Albertans get the emergency care where and when they need it.

“Every resource we can add helps us provide care for Albertans,” says Darren Sandbeck, Chief Paramedic and Senior Provincial Director, AHS EMS. “We continue to see a large increase in call volume that is keeping EMS crews busy, and these new ambulances and their paramedic crews are already hard at work serving Albertans. We are thankful for their unwavering service to patients.”

AHS continues to experience significant pressure on our healthcare system due to higher-than-normal volumes of seriously ill patients, the continued impact of COVID-19, and increased staff absences due to illness. In recent months we have seen a very sharp increase in patients requiring Emergency Department/EMS care across the province.

We value the work our physicians and healthcare teams do every day in communities across Alberta, and we recognize the strain and challenges that our teams are working within. We remain committed to supporting recruitment and retention efforts to ensure we are there for our staff and physicians, and patients and families when they need us the most.

New staff have also been hired to staff these new ambulances. In May and June, EMS posted several new positions, and has made progress on hiring:

Additional staffing resources will continue to be added later this year:

“Our healthcare system remains under strain, especially in Edmonton and Calgary, and we continue to see increased pressure on EMS and our emergency departments in particular,” says Minister of Health Jason Copping. “We are adding resources and staff across the system, and this will help to ensure Albertans continue to get the care they need. EMS has worked very quickly to bring these new ambulances and vehicles online, and I’d like to thank our EMS teams for their tireless work in challenging circumstances.”

To learn more about the work that AHS is doing to ensure sustainable high-quality emergency medical services are available for all Albertans, visit our website.

Alberta Health Services is the provincial health authority responsible for planning and delivering health supports and services for more than four million adults and children living in Alberta. Its mission is to provide a patient-focused, quality health system that is accessible and sustainable for all Albertans.