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The Ambulance Services Act

S.M. 1985-86, c. 7

The Ambulance Services Act

(Assented to July 11, 1985)

HER MAJESTY, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of Manitoba, enacts as follows:

Definitions.

1

In this Act,

"ambulance attendant" means a person who is employed or engaged, with or without remuneration, on a full-time or part-time basis, to attend and assist patients while they are receiving ambulance services;

"ambulance driver" means a person who is employed or engaged, with or without remuneration, on a full-time or part-time basis, to drive or pilot an ambulance vehicle while it is being used to provide ambulance services;

"ambulance service" means the service of transporting a patient by means of an ambulance vehicle, and may include the service of carrying the patient into and out of the ambulance vehicle and the service of attending and assisting the patient while being so transported or carried; "ambulance services program" means a system for making ambulance services available to a community and includes the ambulance vehicles and other equipment necessary to the provision of the ambulance services; "ambulance vehicle" means any motor vehicle or aircraft that is used for the transportation of patients and that is specifically designed, constructed and equipped for that purpose;

"commission" means the Manitoba Health Services Commission established under The Health Services Insurance Act;

"grant" means a financial grant under Part II;

"licence" means a licence issued under this Act;

"Manitoba Health Services Fund" means the Manitoba Health Services Fund established under The Health Services Insurance Act;

"minister" means the member of the Executive Council charged by the Lieutenant Governor in Council with the administration of this Act;

"municipality" means any locality the inhabitants of which are incorporated under the authority of The Municipal Act or another Act of the Legislature, and includes a rural municipality, a local government district and an incorporated city, town or village;

"officer" means a standards officer appointed under Part I;

"patient" means a person who requires ambulance services because of illness, injury or incapacity.

PART I

LICENCES AND STANDARDS

Ambulance services licence.

2

No person shall operate the business or undertaking of providing ambulance services, except pursuant to a valid and subsisting licence issued therefor.

Ambulance attendant licence.

3(1)

No person shall act as an ambulance attendant except pursuant to a valid and subsisting licence issued therefor.

Ambulance driver licence.

3(2)

No person shall act as an ambulance driver unless the person holds both

(a) a valid and subsisting licence issued therefor; and

(b) a valid and subsisting licence as an ambulance attendant.

Employment of unlicensed attendant prohibited.

4(1)

No person shall employ or engage any other person as an ambulance attendant unless that other person holds a valid and subsisting licence therefor.

Employment of unlicensed driver prohibited.

4(2)

No person shall employ or engage any other person as an ambulance driver unless that other person holds

(a) a valid and subsisting licence therefor; and

(b) a valid and subsisting licence as an ambulance attendant.

Licensing standards and other requirements.

5(1)

For the purposes of sections 2, 3 and 4, the commission may, by regulation,

(a) establish standards for ambulance services;

(b) establish standards and other requirements for ambulance vehicles;

(c) prescribe the equipment and other apparatus that any ambulance vehicle shall contain and establish standards therefor;

(d) prescribe qualifications and other requirements that any applicant for a licence must have or comply with;

(e) prescribe fees that shall be payable for the issue of any licence.

Issue of licences.

5(2)

The commission, if satisfied that it is not against the public interest to do so and subject to sections 6 and 7, may issue a licence to any applicant who complies with the applicable standards and requirements, has the applicable qualifications and pays the applicable fees established or prescribed under subsection (1).

Issue of provisional licences.

5(3)

Where an applicant for a licence is not in compliance with one or more of the applicable standards or requirements established or prescribed under subsection (1) or does not possess one or more of the applicable qualifications prescribed under subsection (1), or the commission has been unable through no fault of the applicant to determine whether or not the applicant is in compliance with those standards or requirements or possesses those qualifications, the commission may, subject to section 7 and if satisfied that it is not against the public interest to do so, issue a provisional licence to the applicant subject to such terms and conditions as to subsequent compliance with the standards or requirements or subsequent attainment of the qualifications as the commission deems requisite, and upon the issue of the licence the applicant shall observe those terms and conditions.

Licence applications.

5(4)

An application for a licence under this section shall be made on a form prescribed by the commission.

Training courses.

6(1)

Where a qualification prescribed under section 5 requires an applicant to have taken and passed a training course, the commission may

(a) determine the training course to be taken and passed, if not specified under section 5;

(b) itself conduct the training course, or make such other arrangements therefor as it deems advisable; and

(c) determine whether the applicant, after taking the training course, has passed it.

Examinations.

6(2)

Where a qualification prescribed under section 5 requires an applicant to take and pass an examination, the commission may set or determine the examination to be taken and may determine whether the applicant, after taking the examination, has passed it.

Need for proposed ambulance services.

7

The commission shall not issue any licence to operate an ambulance services business or undertaking unless, after consulting with each municipality in the area or areas where the applicant proposes to operate the business or undertaking, it is satisfied that there is a need for an ambulance services business or undertaking or for an additional ambulance services business or undertaking in the area or areas.

Expiry of licences.

8

The commission may by regulation prescribe a date for the expiry of every licence, but may issue any licence for a shorter period than that prescribed where it deems it to be advisable and in the public interest to do so.

Conditions of licence.

9

Any licence may be issued subject to such conditions as the commission deems requisite, and the holder of the licence shall observe those conditions.

Standards and requirements.

10(1)

The commission may by regulation establish standards and prescribe other requirements that shall be observed by licence holders, respecting ambulance services, and respecting ambulance vehicles and the equipment and apparatus to be contained therein.

Unauthorized equipment.

10(2)

Where a standard or requirement established or prescribed under subsection (1) requires a licence holder to use or install specified items of equipment in the premises from which the licence holder is operating an ambulance services business or undertaking or in any ambulance vehicle being used by the licence holder to provide ambulance services, the licence holder shall not, without the prior approval of the commission, use or install, either in addition to the specified items or in substitution for any of the specified items, any item of equipment that is not specified in the standard or requirement.

Exception.

10(3)

Subsection (2) does not apply in the case of any additional item of medical equipment that a medical practitioner requires to be transported along with and for the purposes of the patient receiving an ambulance service.

Forms.

10(4)

Where a regulation made under subsection (1) requires the use of a form prescribed by the commission, the commission may prescribe the form to be used and the contents thereof.

Suspension, cancellation of licences.

11

The commission may suspend, for such period of time as it deems necessary or until a specified condition is met, or cancel any licence, where the licence holder

(a) contravenes or fails to observe a provision of this Act or a regulation made under this Act; or

(b) knowingly makes a false or misleading statement or entry in the application for the licence or in any record or report required to be kept or made under this Act or a regulation made under this Act;

or for any cause the commission deems sufficient.

Hearing.

12(1)

Where under this Part the commission refuses to issue a licence or suspends or cancels a licence, it shall as soon as practicable thereafter and after giving the applicant for or holder of the licence at least 14 days' notice of the date, time and place thereof, hold a hearing at which the applicant or holder, as the case may be, may attend either alone or with counsel and may submit evidence and be heard.

Decision of commission.

12(2)

Upon a hearing under this section, the commission may either confirm or rescind the refusal, suspension or cancellation or may vary the suspension, as the case may be.

Hearings by commission members.

12(3)

The commission may designate any one or more of its members to hold the hearings for which provision is made in this section, and upon any hearing the decision of the member or members so designated is the decision of the commission.

Appeal to minister.

13(1)

An applicant for a licence or the holder of a licence, as the case may be, who feels aggrieved by a decision of the commission under section 12 may, within 14 days of the making of the decision, appeal therefrom to the minister by serving the minister and the commission with a notice of appeal in a form prescribed by the commission, and the minister shall hear the appeal as soon as practicable.

Parties.

13(2)

The commission is a party to any appeal under this section, and the commission and the appellant may each attend the appeal hearing either alone or with counsel and may each submit evidence thereat and be heard.

Decision of minister.

13(3)

Upon a hearing under this section, the minister may either

(a) confirm the decision appealed from; or

(b) order the commission to rescind or vary the decision appealed from; and the commission shall comply with any order made under clause (b).

Appointment of standards officers.

14

The commission may appoint one or more persons as standards officers to carry out the duties and exercise the powers imposed or conferred upon standards officers by section 15.

Powers of officers.

15(1)

An officer, upon producing and exhibiting an identification card issued by the commission, may at any reasonable hour and with the consent of the person operating an ambulance services business or undertaking,

(a) enter and inspect the business premises of the business or undertaking and any ambulance vehicle used in connection therewith;

(b) examine the equipment and installations in any premises or ambulance vehicle being inspected under clause (a);

(c) examine and take extracts from or make copies of any books, registers, records or accounts found upon premises or in an ambulance vehicle being inspected under clause (a);

and may require the person to assist in the inspection under clause (a) or the examination under clause (b) or (c), or to provide such information as the officer may request and as the person may be able to provide, and the person shall give the assistance and provide the information.

Warrant required.

15(2)

Where the consent of a person for the purposes of an inspection under subsection (1) cannot be obtained, and an officer believes on reasonable and probable grounds that the proposed inspection will disclose evidence of a breach of this Act or the regulations, the officer may, without that consent but on the authority of a warrant issued under subsection (3), enter the premises or the ambulance vehicle proposed to be inspected and there do the things set out in subsection (1).

Issue of warrant.

15(3)

A judge or justice, if satisfied by information given upon oath that there are reasonable and probable grounds for believing that a breach of this Act or the regulations has occurred or is occurring upon premises or within or in connection with an ambulance vehicle and that an inspection of the premises or ambulance vehicle will disclose evidence thereof, may issue a warrant authorizing the officer named in the warrant to enter the premises or ambulance vehicle described in the warrant and there do the things set out in subsection (1) for purposes of the inspection.

Suspensions by officer.

15(4)

Where in the course of an inspection under this section it becomes apparent to an officer that the holder of a licence, or a person operating an ambulance services business or undertaking or rendering an ambulance service pursuant to an order made under section 16, is not performing or is unable to perform a service authorized by the licence or by the order, as the case may be, safely and with due regard for the well-being of patients, the officer may forthwith suspend the licence, if any, and take such other steps as may in the opinion of the officer be necessary for the immediate protection and well-being of any patient then receiving or about to receive an ambulance service from the licence holder or person, but the period of suspension shall not exceed 7 days.

Interference with inspection.

15(5)

No person shall obstruct or interfere with an officer engaged in carrying out an inspection under this section.

Inspection reports.

15(6)

An officer carrying out an inspection under this section shall immediately thereafter prepare and submit to the commission in a form prescribed by the commission a report of the inspection and shall forward a copy thereof to the operator of the ambulance services business or undertaking or ambulance vehicle inspected.

Exemptions.

16(1)

Where the commission deems it to be in the public interest to do so, it may, by order, exempt a person from the operation of any provision of this Part or a regulation made thereunder, and in that event the provision does not apply to the person notwithstanding anything to the contrary in this Act.

Exemption and substitution.

16(2)

Where the commission deems it to be in the public interest to do so, it may, by order, exempt a person from the operation of any provision of this Part or a regulation made thereunder and prescribe another provision or other provisions in substitution therefor, and in that event the provision from the operation of which the person is so exempted does not apply to the person notwithstanding anything to the contrary in this Act, but the person shall observe the substituted provision or provisions.

Rescission of orders.

16(3)

The commission may at any time rescind an order made under this section, where the commission is satisfied that it is in the public interest to do so.

Automatic expiry of orders.

16(4)

An order made under this section expires on December 31 next following the making thereof, if not sooner rescinded under subsection (3).

Regulations Act.

16(5)

An order made under this section is not subject to The Regulations Act.

Commission may provide ambulance services.

17

The commission may itself, subject to this Act and the regulations,

(a) provide ambulance services;

(b) operate any business or undertaking of providing ambulance services.

Highway Traffic Act, etc.

18

This Part is subject to The Highway Traffic Act, and any Act of the Parliament of Canada regulating the use of aircraft and applicable in the province, and to the regulations made under those Acts.

PART II

FINANCIAL GRANTS

Payment of grants.

19(1)

From and out of the Manitoba Health Services Fund, the commission may pay financial grants, upon the receipt of an application therefor, to any municipality or any operator of an ambulance services business or undertaking, to assist in the establishment, development and operation of ambulance services programs.

Application for grant.

19(2)

An application for a grant under this section

(a) shall be in a form prescribed by the commission; and

(b) shall be accompanied by a proposed ambulance services program in writing, in a form prescribed by the commission, showing how and for what purposes the grant is proposed to be used in the program, and by such financial statements and other documents and information as the commission may require.

Modification of programs.

19(3)

In making any grant under this section, the commission may review and, in consultation with the recipient, may modify the proposed ambulance services program submitted by the recipient and may impose requirements to be observed by the recipient in carrying out the program.

Condition of grant.

19(4)

It is a condition of any grant made under this section that the recipient thereof

(a) will use the grant in accordance with its proposed ambulance services program as submitted under subsection (2) or, where the ambulance services program has been modified under subsection (3), in accordance with its ambulance services program as modified under that subsection; and

(b) will observe any requirements imposed under subsection (3).

Special audits.

19(5)

The commission may at any time cause to be audited the books, records and accounts of any recipient of a grant under this section, relating to the receipt and use of the grant, and the recipient shall render any assistance requested in the course of and for the purposes of the audit.

Northern Patient Transportation Program.

20(1)

From and out of the Manitoba Health Services Fund, the commission may from time to time

(a) pay financial grants to regional authorities charged with the administration of the Northern Patient Transportation Program; or

(b) make direct payments to such persons as the commission may determine; to be used for the purposes of that program and in such manner as the commission may direct.

"Northern Patient Transportation Program" defined.

20(2)

In this section, "Northern Patient Transportation Program"

means the program established to provide, or to assist financially or otherwise in the provision of, transportation services required to enable persons located at places within that part of northern Manitoba specified and described in a regulation of the commission to obtain medical treatment or diagnosis that is not available at those places.

Residents.

20(3)

Benefits under the Northern Patient Transportation Program are available only to or in respect of persons who are residents as defined in The Health Services Insurance Act, and any question that arises as to whether or not a person is a resident within the meaning and for the purposes of this section may be determined by the commission and its decision is final and binding.

PART III

GENERAL

Payments from Consolidated Fund.

21

From and out of the Consolidated Fund, with moneys authorized by an Act of the Legislature to be paid and applied for the purposes of this Act, the Minister of Finance may pay to the commission such amounts as the commission may from time to time requisition for the purposes of this Act.

Special advances.

22

With no authority other than this section, and with the approval of the Lieutenant Governor in Council, the Minister of Finance may make advances to the commission, for the purposes of this Act and in addition to any amounts paid under section 21, from and out of the Consolidated Fund at such times and upon such terms and conditions as the Lieutenant Governor in Council may approve.

Credits to fund.

23

The commission shall place to the credit of the Manitoba Health Services Fund for the purposes of this Act

(a) any amount received under section 21 or 22 or any other provision of this Act;

(b) any amount received from any source for the purposes of this Act; and

(c) any amount of interest received upon moneys from time to time at the credit of the fund for the purposes of this Act.

Administration costs.

24

The costs of administering this Act, as well as the amounts that the commission may be required to pay under Part II from time to time, shall be paid from and out of the Manitoba Health Services Fund.

Investment.

25

If at any time the balance at the credit of the fund for the purposes of this Act is in excess of the amount that is required for the immediate purposes of the Act, the commission shall pay over the surplus moneys to the Minister of Finance for investment for and on behalf of the commission for the purposes of this Act.

Regulations.

26(1)

For the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this Act according to their intent, the commission may make regulations ancillary thereto and not inconsistent therewith; and every regulation made under, and in accordance with the authority granted by, this section has the force of law; and, without restricting the generality of the foregoing, the commission may make regulations, not inconsistent with any other provision of this Act,

(a) establishing standards and prescribing qualifications, fees and other requirements for the issue of licences;

(b) prescribing a date for the expiry of licences;

(c) establishing standards and prescribing other requirements to be observed by licence holders, respecting ambulance services and respecting ambulance vehicles and the equipment and apparatus to be contained therein;

(d) specifying and describing a part of northern Manitoba for purposes of the Northern Patient Transportation Program, to which reference is made in Part II.

Regulation applicable to part of province.

26(2)

A regulation under this section may be made to apply to the whole province or any part of the province.

Offence and penalty.

27(1)

Any person who contravenes or fails to observe a provision of this Act or a regulation made thereunder, or makes any statement or gives any information under this Act or regulation knowing it to be false or misleading, is guilty of an offence and liable, on summary conviction,

(a) if it is an offence under a provision of Part I, to a fine not exceeding $1,000.00 for each day that the contravention or failure to observe continues or, in the case of an individual, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 30 days or to both the fine and the imprisonment; and

(b) if it is an offence under a provision of Part II, to a fine not exceeding $1,000.00 or, in the case of an individual, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 30 days or to both the fine and the imprisonment.

Penalty in addition to suspension or cancellation.

27(2)

Where a licence is suspended or cancelled for the reason that the holder is guilty of an offence under subsection (1), the penalty provided in that subsection may be imposed on the holder in addition to the suspension or cancellation.

Reference in Continuing Consolidation.

28

This Act may be referred to as chapter A65 of the Continuing Consolidation of the Statutes of Manitoba.

Commencement of Act.

29

This Act comes into force on a day fixed by proclamation.