The Ottawa emergency department is facing criticism from a new charity group that says it’s not adequately named and presented.
The Canadian Emergency Medical Association wants to change its name and branding.
The charity says the department has been struggling with its name, which has become synonymous with a lack of basic care and services, and a poor response to calls for help.
The group is calling on the city to adopt a new logo that could help bring the department in line with other cities in Canada.
Ottawa is still struggling with the impact of a lack to meet patient needs, the charity said.
“The city is understaffed and the emergency department lacks sufficient staff to manage its emergency department services and its patient populations,” said CEMA president and CEO Mike Pang.
“In an ideal world, the name of the emergency care department would reflect the services that we provide and that are being provided.”
Pang said the city needs to do a better job of describing its services.
The city’s emergency departments were first chartered in 1988.
It opened in 1993, but it only had two full-time emergency medical technicians, two nurse practitioners and two nurse midwives.
That was in part due to the city’s new government-wide health strategy.
The strategy called for increasing the number of paramedics and nurses and increasing the proportion of people with disabilities.
CEMA said Ottawa needs to start thinking about the need for new types of emergency services in the city, not just the existing ones.
There are some good reasons for Ottawa’s current emergency department to exist, said Pang, but he said the name is a “fraud” and a “false marketing strategy.”
The emergency department, he said, needs to have a new identity and logo to be able to better serve patients.
A spokesperson for the city of Ottawa, which oversees the department, said the agency is reviewing the request and will make a decision in the coming months.
An Ottawa police spokesperson said the department does not comment on pending litigation.
In response to the group’s request, Pang said a new city logo could be used in future, including the logo used for the Ottawa police.
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