UPDATED: Paramedics more likely to commit suicide: report

Over 7 percent of paramedics have attempted suicide
La Presse

A troubling report on the mental health state of those who respond to emergencies and save lives.

The Journal de Montréal reported findings of a 2005 survey that said 58 percent of paramedics admit to be under a very high amount of psychological stress.

That stress translates to suicidal thoughts for over a quarter of paramedics surveyed at Urgences Santé.

Over 7 percent of the workforce has actually attempted to take their own life, and at least eight employees have committed suicide since 2001, according to the report.

The Federation of Paramedic Workers in Quebec (FPESPQ) said the situation is worse for workers around Montreal because of the high number of calls.

“They tend to have a lot of calls a day, and they do not have a lot of back up so they are really stressed," François Trudelle, the president of the federation said.

Trudelle says the psychological help offered to workers could be improved because it's not given soon enough.

A 2005 report proposed radical changes at Urgences Santé, but close to 10 years later, a handful of paramedics say the situation has barely improved. 

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