Grey County Paramedic Services (PS) provides emergency ambulance service to the Grey County. When somebody calls 911 for a medical emergency, Grey County paramedics assess, treat and transport the patient to a hospital emergency department.
Containing urban, industrial, agricultural, rural & recreational areas, Grey County presents unique challenges for PS operations. As the fourth largest county in Ontario, covering an area of 454,040 hectares, Grey County is home to more than 100,000 residents. Our Paramedics responded to more than 23,000 calls for service annually.
Grey County is dedicated to saving lives through education, service & team work.
We are committed to providing the highest quality of pre-hospital emergency care to the citizens and visitors of Grey County. This is accomplished by meeting and exceeding standards set by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care and County Council.
Grey County Paramedic Services is committed to providing quality patient care and the following response time targets 24 hours per day, 7 days per week:
40% of the time - Sudden Cardiac Arrest - Community Defibrillator Response (6 minutes or less)
60% of the time - CTAS 1 - Paramedic Response (8 minutes or less)
90% of the time - CTAS 2 - Paramedic Response (15 minutes or less)
90% of the time - CTAS 3 - Paramedic Response (20 minutes or less)
90% of the time - CTAS 4 - Paramedic Response (20 minutes or less)
90% of the time - CTAS 5 - Paramedic Response (20 minutes or less)
In 2017, Grey County paramedics responded to 23,419 calls for service. The responses are as follows:
323 non-emergency calls (code 1 and 2)
12,066 emergency coverage calls (code 8)
11,030 emergency calls (code 3 and 4)
80 Primary Care Paramedics (full time)
56 Primary Care Paramedics (part time)
5 Paramedic Supervisors
1 Operations Manager
1 Quality Assurance and Community Programs Manager
1 Wellness and Support manager
3 Administrative Support Staff
1 Equipment Supply Technician
What happens when I call ‘911’?
Your one emergency phone call sets of a chain of events that passes through several different call centres & many different people. Usually within 90 seconds, your call is received by an Ambulance Communication Officer (ACO) in London, Ontario and Paramedics are alerted to respond to your location. The ACO will continue to ask you questions in order to update the Paramedics about your condition as they travel to assist you.
Why did I receive a bill from the hospital for ambulance services?
Most patients who receive land ambulance transportation will be required to pay a co-payment for the ambulance services rendered. In these cases, hospitals act as the billing agents.
Administration / Operations
Administration for Grey County Paramedic Services is located at the Grey County Administrative building in Owen Sound. There are seven ambulance stations strategically located throughout Grey County to provide quick response:
Grey County has seven stations located strategically to optimize our resources and minimize response times. Stations are located in Owen Sound, Meaford, Markdale, Dundalk, Durham, Hanover & Craigleith. An eighth station opened in Chatsworth in 2019. All stations except the Chatsworth base are staffed 24 hours per day. Up to 10 ambulances are staffed during peak hours, with 7 ambulances being the minimum at night from midnight to 6:00 AM.
A Duty Supervisor is assigned to each shift to work in the field overseeing ambulance operations.
In 1997, the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care announced the downloading of land ambulance services to the Upper Tier Municipalities. On January 1, 2001 the Corporation of the County of Grey assumed responsibility for oversight of the ambulance service of Grey County. On September 4, 2004, the County of Grey became the direct operator of the service through the Grey County Emergency Medical Services (GCEMS) department.
Grey County Paramedics
All Grey County PS Paramedics are certified to the Primary Care Paramedic (PCP) level. The PCP is a graduate of a two year college program. Emphasizing anatomy, physiology, pharmacology, and mechanisms involved in acute injury and illness, the program involves classroom learning and clinical hours working directly in the field. Once graduated, a paramedic must be successful in the provincial certification process, known
as the Advanced Emergency Medical Care Assistant (A-EMCA) exam. In addition, each PCP must complete various continuing medical education courses on an annual basis to maintain their qualifications.
Grey County Paramedics are certified by a physician to perform a number of controlled medical acts for patients experiencing acute injury or illness, including:
- semi-automatic external defibrillation
- 12-Lead ECG acquisition & monitoring
- pulse oxymetry & CO monitoring
- Continuous Positive Airway Pressure device application
- supra-glottic airway insertion
- medication administration: acetylsalicylic acid (ASA), epinephrine, glucagon, glucose gel, nitroglycerine, salbutamol, dimenhydrinate, diphenhydramine, ketorolac and naloxone.
Additionally, some Grey County Paramedics are trained to provide peripheral intravenous (IV) access as well as administration of fluids and dextrose.
Paramedics provide emergency patient care, assessment, CPR, patient immobilization & extrication, oxygen therapy, basic trauma life support, crisis management, triage, CCAC referrals & patient transportation.
Community Paramedicine Programs
Community paramedicine shifts the role of paramedics from first responders to proactive healthcare providers. Grey County has been at the forefront of community paramedicine in Ontario and providers several programs. Learn more