From 2014 to 2021, Airdrie’s ambulances have been dispatched to Calgary 9-11 events over 7,500 times. According to data obtained through an informal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act request (FOIP 2022-G-078) out of the 7000-some requests, Airdrie’s Emergency Medical Services were assigned to 9-11 events in the city of Calgary, meaning they were 'en route' and having arrived at the scene a total of 3164 times between 2014 and 2021. 

Calls that Airdrie EMS was dispatched to and were physically on the way to the scene in Calgary, but were either pulled off the call or had responded to another event, numbered 2971 during the last seven years. 

The highest number of total dispatches was in 2021 with 3872 calls for Airdrie EMS to respond, with 1360 of those calls being marked by Airdrie EMS both en route and physically having arrived on the scene.  

Conversely, according to another informal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act request (FOIP 2022-G-079) Calgary ambulances were asked to relocate to Airdrie 3132 times between 2014 and 2021. However, it should be noted that this information does not include, “The completion of the relocation request. [It] is not documented in the CAD system and therefore cannot be provided.” The data from this request includes only Calgary stationed units that were requested to relocate to a location outside of Calgary. 

Since 2014, there has been a systematic increase in the number of times Airdrie’s ambulances were dispatched to Calgary. In 2014, there was a total of 147 calls for Airdrie EMS to respond to Calgary. 90 of those calls were in fact marked both en-route and on-scene, whereas about 39 calls were en-route but never made it on scene. The rest of the calls, approximately 18 calls, were neither dispatched to Airdrie EMS nor did EMS respond. This can be for a variety of reasons, including a request for an ambulance to ‘stand down’ or a closer unit responded; A caller could have also indicated emergency services were no longer available. Since 2014, a total of 646 of these types of calls have been recorded, though they are only calls that pertain to Airdrie EMS crews in relation to Calgary. 

Between 2014 and 2016 the dispatch calls for Airdrie EMS to respond to emergencies in Calgary remained quite steady, with a drop in 2015 to only 119 total calls. However, by 2017, Airdrie EMS was dispatched a total of 370 times, with well over half those calls being en-route and on-scene by Airdrie paramedics.  

By 2019, the total number of calls was over six times that of 2014, with Airdrie EMS en-route and on-scene half the time or more. 

In 2020, Airdrie paramedics were dispatched 1527 times to Calgary. Paramedics were en-route and on-scene 730 times.  

It should be noted that the data obtained from FOIP 2022-G-078 also shows that there was a total of over 29 thousand dispatch calls between 2014 to 2021 for EMS outside of Calgary, some dispatches as far as Vulcan, 128 kilometres out of Calgary. 

No data was recorded within the FOIP documents for 2022, though provincial health officials and Alberta AHS EMS officials have cited that since the implementation of the Metro Response Plan (MRP), “which is working to keep suburban ambulances in their home communities instead of using these ambulances to cover urban areas when call volumes are highest,” there was been a drop in rural and suburban ambulances being diverted to larger urban areas. 

According to an EMS System Pressure & Mitigation document, “Since implementing these first steps in March, unit availability has been increasing already in many places including Stony Plain, Beaumont, Airdrie and Cochrane, to name only a few.” 

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