August 15, 2020

** Quebec coroner blames slow ambulance response times for contributing to death of paramedic


** The December 2017 death of a Quebec paramedic in Levis could possibly have been avoided had the EMS response to him not been so slow. That is the word from Global News (CP/July 30) which quoted Coroner Julie Langlois as saying the 17 minutes it took to reach Hugo St-Onge, 24, may have expedited his demise. According to the news site, Langlois offered her finding in a written report published yesterday. St-Onge, who was at his girlfriend’s house when he became ill, suffered convulsions. An autopsy later found he died from a heart problem. EMS units from a neighboring region were tasked with responding to the call since all three of the city’s rigs were already responding to other help hails. One month before he died, St-Onge signed a letter which decried the lack of available prehospital resources. Langlois recommended the province and regional health authorities review how EMS response is done. She also suggested improved integration between the 911 call centre and ambulance dispatch. In addition, she said medics should be given GPS enabled cellphones to keep track of their locations.


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