Adventuresome activities

Earlier, we reported former British Columbia Ambulance Service chief executive officer Fred Platteel could be paid up to $150,000 to undertake three major projects for the emergency and health services commission. But it doesn't seem that contract work was originally part of his retirement plans. In an email to sevice members, Mr. Platteel wrote that he would instead be "spending more time with my family and friends (and) enjoying my hobbies. They include adventure travel, hiking, climbing, biking, skiing and fishing." The following is a complete copy of that email.

From: Platteel, Fred HLTH:EX
Sent: Mon 11/06/2007 5:11 PM
Subject: My Retirement

It is with mixed emotions that I write this note. After much debate I have decided to retire from the BC Ambulance Service at the end of June. My last day will be June 13th followed by a couple weeks of vacation leading up to my retirement day at the end of the month.

It is hard to believe that I have been with the service for 33 years. It seems like just yesterday when I was taking EMA II training at the BCAS training academy at 16th and Cambie in Vancouver. I was so pumped up and excited about a new career and had no idea where it was going to take me. Let me tell you, it has been a great ride; from EMA II, to Dispatcher, to Supervisor, to Director, to Assistant Executive Director, to Chief Executive Officer with absolutely no regrets.

Personally, it has been extremely rewarding to be part of such a great team at the BCAS and I thank you all for that.

When you think about what we do every day in helping people throughout British Columbia and the many achievements in 33 year history at BCAS it feels great to have been part of it. Just to illustrate how much things have changed in the past 33 years I thought I'd share the following. I still remember my first shift in Vancouver Dispatch. It was July 1975"”they needed shift coverage for the "graveyard" shift-midnight to 06:00"”being new to dispatch I eagerly took the shift--when I arrived at work later that night I discovered that I would be working by myself! The "graveyard" shift in those days had only one dispatcher scheduled to be on duty"”that included call taking and radio.

Now that I am retiring I plan on spending more time with my family and friends enjoying my hobbies. They include adventure travel, hiking, climbing, biking, skiing and fishing.

Before I go I just want to say that the future of the BC Ambulance Service and the Emergency and Health Services Commission looks bright. The recent expansion of E&HSC that now includes HealthLine Services is just one example of an opportunity for the future.

There are going to be many difficult decisions"”as you all know there are many pressures on the system. Year over year demand growth has been out stripping our capacity"”the answers may seem simple"”just put more money into the BCAS"”as you know that is simply not sustainable. The challenges ahead are going to force us all to make some tough choices, if we keep a focus on our core business we will not go wrong.

One key to a bright future includes the maintaining of public confidence"”in our short history we have all worked hard at gaining public trust"”we can not afford to now ignore that and throw it all away. This may sound defensive, however, openly criticizing management will achieve nothing towards improved public confidence"”it will in fact undermine it. We are all here for the same reasons"”most of us started on car and have the same career roots.

Enough of the preaching, I wish you all well and look forward to talking to many of you over the years to come!

Thank you,

1 Comment

It follows then that public confidence would be equally "undermined" by anyone “openly criticizing” or questioning BCAS/EHSC’s awarding of an untendered contract to one of their recently-retired CEOs.

Coincidentally I’ve heard that part of Mr. Platteel’s current assignment is to assist in the drafting of the Emergency Health Services Commission Enigmatic Criticism Act which is expected to require that all future questioning of BCAS management, EHSC management, this incestuous financial arrangement and anything else prescribed in Regulation, will be surreptitious, discrete and cloaked in anonymity.

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