June 19th, 2024

Gélinas: "How Many Lives Lost?"—Ontario's Four-Year Wait for AED Registry Continues

QUEEN'S PARK — France Gélinas, Health critic for the Official Opposition NDP and MPP for Nickel Belt issued the following statement on the fourth anniversary of the Defibrillator Registration and Public Access Act, 2020, receiving Royal Assent:

“On November 18, 2019, I introduced a bill to give 911 dispatch operators the location of every AED in their territory. This way if someone has a heart attack, the 911 operator can direct anyone present to retrieve the AED and use it to save lives. This is an initiative implemented in Manitoba, whose registry has been active since January 2013. The Heart and Stroke foundation, a strong supporter of this bill estimated it would save 700 to 1,000 lives a year once implemented. That’s up to four thousand lives lost because of government inaction.

“This footdragging by the Ford government is an insult to the many people from across the province, including my constituents who took time out of their busy schedule to give impressive presentations to the Standing Committee on Social Policy to support the registry.

The Sudbury chapter of the Heart and Stroke Foundation, Sudbury EMS professors and Doctors from Northern City of Heroes all presented, but there is still nothing. We all know that this registry is going to save lives, but we’re tired of waiting.”