Ambulance New Brunswick can't ease the minds of Grand Manan Island residents, who fear losing their medevac service.
The provincial ambulance service said Wednesday it can't comment on negotiations with Atlantic Charters — a contracted company based on the island that transports people to the mainland in case of medical emergency.
In response to a request for information about the negotiation timeline, outstanding issues and what happens if issues aren't resolved, Jean-Pierre Savoie, the vice-president of of Ambulance New Brunswick, sent an emailed statement.
"Ambulance New Brunswick has been in ongoing discussions with Atlantic Charters, but we are unable to comment on the specifics of those conversations at this time as talks continue," he said.
Grand Manan Mayor Bonnie Morse said the islanders' main concern is that if negotiations go beyond December, when new transportation regulations come in, then residents will lose their local medevac service.
That means residents will have to depend on Ambulance New Brunswick's air ambulance program, which is run from the mainland and may not be as fast.
"With our weather and the fog, it's not always accessible for that plane to come and land on the island, which is the advantage of having a local company because it's easier to leave in an airplane than it is sometimes to come back."
The new regulations make changes to pilot duty times, and necessitated a contract renegotiation. Savoie did not say whether the negotiations means Atlantic Charters service will completely halt in December.
Savoie said Ambulance N.B.'s air ambulance program is available for every part of the province, including Grand Manan.
"We are committed to continuing with these important discussions regarding services for Grand Manan," he said.
Morse said whatever happens with the contract, her main concern is that the 2,300 people on the island can still get medical attention even if the weather is bad.
She said the medevac service is essential during medical emergencies, which the local hospital is not equipped to deal with.
"Stroke patients, they can actually bypass the hospital and go directly to the airport when they're assessed by the ambulance. And so it gets them to treatment in a much more timely fashion," she said. "For strokes, it is a really critical situation."
CBC News requested comment from Minister of Health Bruce Fitch, but he was not available Wednesday.