State-wide ambulance response times are the best they have been in five years thanks to the Andrews Labor Government’s investment and reform, the Ambulance Victoria 2015-16 Annual Report showed today.
Under the Labor Government, Victorians experiencing life threatening conditions receive faster ambulance responses today than they did under the previous Liberal Government – despite record demand for ambulances and in our emergency departments.
The Report shows 75.2 per cent of Code One incidents are now responded to within 15 minutes, compared to 2012-13 where they fell to a record 73 per cent at the height of the ambulance crisis under the Liberals.
It also confirms there has been a significant improvement in ambulance clearing times at hospitals, with a 16 per cent reduction compared to the previous year.
While we know we have more to do to meet community and government expectations and targets, these improvements are a testament to the wide range of reforms undertaken and funded by the Labor Government to rebuild our ambulance services after four years of crisis and neglect under the former Liberal Government.
Key achievements include:
- The commencement of Dispatch Grid Reform to better identify and provide a faster response to life threatening cases and refer non-urgent cases to alternative service providers
- Implementation of the Fair Work Commission’s recommendation on paramedic work value
- The recruitment of 256 new paramedics and new resources in Shepparton, Gippsland and Ballarat
- The expansion of the Emergency Medical Response program with the Country Fire Authority
- New Family Violence and Child Abuse Practice Guidelines and systems to enable paramedics to better document suspected cases of family violence
- The placement of 26 additional vehicles in Melbourne’s busiest branches
- Commencement of the introduction of power lift stretchers across the entire fleet
- Increased training for paramedics to 40 hours per annum, with a particular emphasis on safety, mental health and wellbeing and clinical development
- Development of the first mental health strategy and partnership with beyondblue
- Trials of part time and flexible work arrangements to better support paramedics juggling family responsibilities
- Introduction of Paramedic Support Co-ordinator roles in Wedderburn and the Grampians and first ever permanent paid ambulance service in Nagambie
- The introduction of the Law Enforcement Assistance Program to provide better information to paramedics about potentially violent patients.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Ambulance Services Jill Hennessy
“Under the Liberals, ambulance response times blew out to the worst on the Australian mainland.”
“We’re turning that around with the best response times in five years.”
“We’ll continue to work side by side with our paramedics, ambulance service and hospitals to invest in and reform our ambulance system.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020