At the end of 2015 a report was released called Ending the Ambulance Crisis.
This report gave an overview of the last few years of crisis in Victorian ambulance service which ambulance union members have fought tirelessly to address.
The report includes recommendations from the Ambulance Performance and Policy Consultative Committee. Four of our delegates – Jan Einsiedel, Luke Baird, Colin Jones and Morgyn McCarthy – have been on the committee, and also on subgroups dealing with issues across the spectrum of the sector, for example, mental health.
The committee has also worked on strategies to improve call taking and dispatching processes, to which our ESTA delegates have also contributed.
All this hard work by ambulance union delegates helped shape the Andrews government recent announcements to address the ambulance crisis, including:
- to bring forward $60million of new ambulance vehicles
- for some additional staff to be placed at Nagambie (and other locations around the state)
- to increase staff numbers at the referral centre which redirects non-emergency calls
- to improve the calls and dispatch service.
This is what happens when ambulance union members are directly involved in government policy and planning – improvements are made to the service where they are really needed, and the voices of paramedics are heard loud and clear.