The director has overall responsibility for the operation of the CACC. Budget management, providing for the health and safety requirements of staff and ensuring all performance standards set by the Hospital and the MOH that are applicable to the CACC are some of my responsibilities. I am responsible for all aspects of the CACC, but the most important role is that of taking care of the human resources aspects of our operation.

It is from the human resources aspect of the CACC’s operation that I want to provide you with a glimpse into the various roles here.

Ambulance Communication Officer – Call Taker

In the role of call taker, the ACO sits at a console especially equipped to support this role. The call taker answers emergency (911) telephone calls. They gather important information from the caller such as: where they are located, what the emergency is and the phone number they are calling from.

The call taker will also manage calls that are not life and death emergencies, such as coordinating non-emergency transfers between hospitals or from long term care homes to medical appointments when an ambulance is required.

Various administrative type calls are also taken by call takers, such as assisting with requests from paramedics for call information when they are finishing their paperwork for their ambulance reports or assisting allied agencies like police and fire services.

Ambulance Communication Officer – Dispatcher

In the role of dispatcher, the ACO sits at a console that has been specially laid out for efficiency in the dispatching role. The dispatcher is focused on the management and movement of ambulances on a call by call, minute by minute basis.

The dispatcher receives the notification of a call via the computer aided dispatch (CAD) system that is utilized at CACC.  They determine which ambulance is the closest most appropriate ambulance to send on the call and then notifies the paramedics to respond.

The dispatcher manages the movement of paramedics during all aspects of the ambulance call ensuring that the paramedics are safe and arranging for any additional resources the paramedics may request. In addition, the dispatcher ensures the paramedic’s break times are respected and manages the booking on and off paramedic crews as they rotate through their shifts.

As call volume increases or decreases and as resources are committed to live calls, the dispatcher will reposition ambulances across the region to ensure all parts of the area have adequate ambulance coverage.  


This role is filled by a qualified ACO who has a lot of experience and has taken on the responsibility of ensuring minute by minute operational performance of the CACC.

ACOs report to the supervisor for all aspects of work when on duty and look to the supervisor for support during difficult calls or to solve complex issues that require a decision outside of the ACO’s authority. The supervisor monitors the ebb and flow of the call volume, ambulance movements and the management of call activity by the ACOs managing the calls.

The supervisor works very closely with the paramedic supervisors of the various ambulance services across the region.  In addition, they are responsible to coordinate with allied agencies such as police, fire, ORNGE air ambulance, coast guard and Joint Rescue Coordination Centre at CFB Trenton.

Supervisors fulfill and administrative role as well by ensuring the CACC is staffed when an ACO calls in sick or must unexpectantly leave work.

A supervisor is assigned to each shift to ensure supervision at all times. Supervisors also support the ACO’s when call volumes are excessive or overwhelming by filling in as call takers and dispatchers.

Supervisors report directly to the operations managers of the CACC.

Positions Supporting CACC Operations

Operations Manager

The operations manager is second in command at CACC and is responsible for overall day to day delivery of service. Operations managers ensure policy compliance, work with staff to ensure all requirements are met for safe working environments, take care of routine human resource matters, resolve issues as they arise, assist with the recruiting process, and the education of new and current staff.  As well, operations managers assist in the development of new policies, and work with MOH officials and paramedic service management to align paramedic service deployment plans with MOH regulations and the CACC’s local policies.

The operations managers also play a vital role during investigations into incidents, by compiling detailed recordings and transcripts of information the CACC receives, as well as the actions taken by the CACC during any event. Investigations are usually initiated by the Investigations section of the MOH, a paramedic service or law enforcement agency.

Quality Program Officer

The QPO monitors the overall performance of CACC and individual ACOs performance to ensure the MOH regulated standards are met and maintained. To monitor performance and ensure that Kingston CACC meets the regulatory requirements, the QPO uses assessment tools and scoring mechanisms provided by the MOH to compare the actual performance of CACC to the performance standards.  The QPO also monitors the performance of every ACO through a random selection of calls against the standards to ensure that the level of service they are providing meets the standard.

The QPO prepares reports on a quarterly and annual basis on all performance aspects of ACO’s and the CACC which provide the basis for educational programs.

The QPO also plays a vital role during investigations into incidents, by compiling detailed recordings and transcripts of information the CACC receives, as well as the actions taken by the CACC during any event. Investigations may be prompted by internal or external requests.

Information Support Officer

The ISO at the Kingston CACC ensures the ACOs and Supervisors of the CACC have the technology-based information ready to hand, up to date and functioning within the various computer systems used at CACC. When cities and counties build new roads, change the name of a street, or a new facility is constructed such as an arena or park, the names of these locations or roads have to be updated in the maps used by the CACC.

The ISO also loads information such as policies, deployment plans (the rules for deploying ambulance resources based on changing resource levels throughout a shift) into the CAD system, so call takers and dispatchers have instant access to all policies at the click of a mouse.

Updating computerized phone systems as phone numbers change, automatic number dial software and a host of software applications are managed by the ISO, ensuring the CACC mission is always delivered, every time the phone rings.

Administration Support

The administrative assistant is the person that keeps everything (that does not pertain to the emergency services aspect of CACC) at CACC operating efficiently.  They are the go-to person at the CACC for everything from sourcing and ordering supplies to submitting payroll.  This is a critical function that helps to keep everyone else’s job running smoothly. 

The administrative assistant reports to the Director.    

Tech Officer

The technical officer at CACC is an employee of the MOH but is located within CACC. They provide support for CACC for all hardware and software issues such as computer desktops, monitors, projectors, telephones, radios and any other technology-based solution under the control of or provided by the Ministry of Health..

It is the responsibility of the technical officer to ensure hardware is up to date, replaced or serviced as required, and that technological inventories are effectively managed. The technical officer reports to MOH, and collaborates with the CACC staff to ensure operating capacity of the CACC is maintained.