1 in 4 Atlantic Canadians are deterred from taking an ambulance because of the cost. Almost 42% said they might delay calling for one because of the fees.
Ambulance fees are keeping people from getting treatment, putting their lives in danger and adding costs to the health system due to increased complications.
Nova Scotia could eliminate ambulance fees for less than $9.7 million dollars a year.
In 2013/2014, Emergency Health Services billed patients $12.2 million for ambulance trips, yet expects to collect only $9.7 million. $9.7 is all it would take to eliminate user fees. If Minister Glavine redirected the partial waivers and subsidies, it would cost even less to make ambulances free.
For less than $9 million, Health Minister Glavine could ensure that all Nova Scotians can get to a hospital in a crisis. This would get patients earlier treatment, saving costs, and help save lives, especially in rural areas.