More Support To Keep Paramedics Healthy And Safe

17 February 2016

New powered stretchers which will make moving patients safer and easier for paramedics will soon be fitted in all Ambulance Victoria vehicles.

Minister for Ambulance Services, Jill Hennessy, today unveiled the state-of-the-art new stretchers funded through the Labor Government’s $20 million commitment to upgrade ambulance vehicles and equipment.

This will enable Ambulance Victoria to fast track the roll out of powered stretchers into the entire fleet of Victoria’s ambulances over the next two years.

The powered stretchers are set to replace the current manual stretchers, and will help improve occupational health and wellbeing of paramedics when lifting and unloading patients.

Manual handling injuries have accounted for close to 66 per cent of all injuries experienced by paramedics in the past three financial years.

Feedback from paramedics highlights increased risk of injury when a patient’s weight exceeds 120kg. The new stretchers will be able to hold up to 250kg, and will reduce the risk as lifting, lowering and unloading of patients is controlled by a touch finger control on a power board.

Along with improved safety for paramedics, the new stretchers will also deliver a higher quality and more comfortable experience for patients.

The Labor Government is working hard to rebuild our ambulance system after four years of crisis and neglect under the former Liberal Government.

Since coming to office, we’ve ended the long-running industrial dispute with paramedics, appointed a new Ambulance Victoria Board, ended hospital bypass and released previously secret data about ambulance response times.

We also brought forward the $60 million Response Time Rescue Fund to immediately implement reforms from the final report of the Ambulance Performance and Police Consultative Committee, Victoria’s Ambulance Action Plan: Improving Services, Saving Lives.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Ambulance Services Jill Hennessy

“There is nothing more important that the health and safety of paramedics and patients – these new powered stretchers will make moving patients safer and easier for paramedics.”

“By working with and listening to paramedics, we’re supporting our paramedics to help them to do what they do best, which is saving lives.”

“We know that healthier, happier paramedics means better care for patients.”

Reviewed 19 August 2020

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