Paramedics' union warns of 'Code Red' in Edmonton

An incident has been reported involving a pedestrian being hit in a parking lot Falsbridge Drive and Falconridge Drive N.E.

The Health Sciences Association of Alberta said Tuesday that there were no ambulances available in Edmonton for a period of time.

In an email to CTV News, Alberta Health Services (AHS) spokesperson Kerry Williamson said they didn’t know what time the post was referring to, and aren’t aware of any long red alerts Tuesday night – with most lasting seconds.

According to AHS, EMS is continuing to see an unprecedented increase in emergency calls, which has been ongoing over the last several months, “due to several combined factors including the COVID-19 pandemic, opioid concerns and emergency calls related to people returning to regular levels of activity. All call types have increased and staff illness and fatigue are also contributing to challenges in the EMS system.”

Williamson said it’s important to remember that information selectively distributed on social media only represents a snapshot in time, and it’s inaccurate to use that to assess the entire day.

“Alberta’s EMS system is in near constant fluctuation as ambulances respond to calls, arrive at hospitals, clear from calls, or as staff come on or go off shift,” he said in a statement.

AHS is also filling 100 paramedic positions across the province, and offering overtime to staff that are willing.