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Calgary Fire should be compensated for answering medical calls, says Calgary councillor

Last Updated Dec 11, 2019 at 4:11 pm MDT

FILE PHOTO: A Calgary firefighter at the scene after a natural gas line burst and caught fire in the northwest on Friday, Nov. 8, 2019. (PHOTO: Tom Ross, 660 NEWS)

CALGARY (660 NEWS) – A report from Livewire said that Calgary Fire responds to almost 30,000 medical calls a year, all the while without compensation from Alberta Health Services.

Ward 11 Councillor Jeromy Farkas believes that Calgary Fire should be compensated for the sheer number of calls they are not required to respond to.

“They go above and beyond and actually go toward helping the provincial government reduce their cost.”

Farkas said he believes the answer is in a coordinated response.

“If you are in an emergency situation, you just want help. You don’t care which level of government is going to be there to come to your side. But, when your family needs assistance, you need to be certain someone will come.”

He said that he is proud of the Calgary Fire responding to certain calls that are “not necessarily in their jurisdiction” because “it’s the right thing to do”.

However, because of Calgary Fire’s ongoing participation, he believes a conversation should be held to properly coordinate integration between the emergency services so that there is someone available at all times.

“At the end of the day, it’s a coordinated approach. We need to make sure that when Calgarians are in an emergency situation, they get the help that they need.”

Despite budget pressures, Farkas said that Calgarians need to be well served and that no corners should be cut in order to ensure that.

-with files from Ryan RunningRabbit