More staff, new partnership on horizon for Parkland Ambulance

Alex Di Pietro
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Parkland Ambulance director of public affairs Lyle Karasiuk, shown last week amid renovations at the station on Second Avenue West last week, says the organization will have a busy new year.

From adding staff to launching a new injury-prevention partnership, Parkland Ambulance will undertake many new initiatives in 2013.

“We do statistical review into January, so we’ll start to look at where our call volumes were dictating us and where we need to improve,” director of public affairs Lyle Karasiuk said.

One of those initiatives is to add more staff to the organization’s current team of 65 and to redefine shift patterns to address the steadily increasing call volume.

“Those discussions have already started within our organization, and I think that we’ll probably be looking forward to adding some additional personnel on,” Karasiuk said. “Our volume has dictated that we need to have that additional personnel on.”

Earlier this month, Parkland Ambulance announced that it would be hiring three new paramedics. Karasiuk said the organization is also looking at expanding its communications personnel.

The distribution of additional staff and assessment to meet that need won’t be finalized until well into January and rolled out in February.

For Parkland Ambulance, the largest addition in 2013 will be that of a newly renovated facility on 24th Street and Second Avenue West, which is slated to open in March.

As well, Parkland Ambulance will announce the launching of a new injury-prevention partnership in February.

“We’ve had many discussions with our injury-prevention partners throughout the city,” Karasiuk said.

The new partnership is being considered as another opportunity to educate the public in the field of injury prevention by having partners collaborate about strategies to meet one common goal.

“Each of us have our own mandates as organizations, but we want to pull everyone together and have a visionary-planning session,” Karasiuk said.

Reflecting on 2012, Karasiuk alluded to the advent of team-building sessions within Parkland Ambulance, which has proven to be beneficial for carrying out operations in a smoother fashion.

Team-building sessions consisted of staff from different shifts coming together and examining their day-to-day operations.

“We got some really positive feedback and were able to make some minimal changes, which have gone a long way in improving the efficiency of our overall operations,” Karasiuk said, noting that Parkland Ambulance would like to hold the sessions on a consistent basis.

Parkland Ambulance also awaits the provincial technological improvement of a new dispatch system in 2013.

“We’ll move to mobile-data terminals in vehicles and better ways of improving the levels of service that we do now,” Karasiuk said.

Geographic location: 24th Street

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