** Arizona paramedic/firefighter killed after apparent bar fight
** Overstretched Calgary paramedics in Alberta battling near daily Code Reds, union says
UNITED STATES NEWS
** Arizona police in Phoenix are investigating the Saturday death of a Daisy Mountain Fire Department paramedic/firefighter. That is the word from 12 News (Eric Watson/Christy Edsitty/January 22) which said Luke Jones, 37, died while off duty at a night club after a fight around 11:30 p.m. Jones was transported to hospital, but died a short time later. According to the newspaper, the matter is being looked at as a homicide. Police told the news site no suspects have been taken into custody. Jones leaves a wife and daughter behind. Funeral services are pending.
** Calgary’s paramedics union says the service is experiencing daily Code Reds. The Calgary Herald (Yolande Cole/January 20) quoted Health Sciences Association of Alberta head Mike Parker as saying shortages are becoming so severe that EMS units are responding from hospitals. Parker said one instance last week saw 46 calls at a point when the city had only 40 working ambulances. Disputing Parker’s version, Alberta Health Services south sector EMS Operations Executive Director Nicholas Thain said ambulances are always ready to respond. Thain said the term Code Red only refers to metro ambulances, not the total number of prehospital units available. In addition, he noted the past two weeks have seen an unusual call volume spike due to the weather and the flu. However, Parker disagreed, saying call volumes were continuously rising due to a growing population and inadequate EMS resources.