Ambulance Victoria

Ms BATH (Eastern Victoria) (17:54): (1760) My adjournment matter this evening is for the Minister for Ambulance Services, the Honourable Martin Foley in the other place. The action I seek from the Minister is to deliver and service and provide the right resources—sufficient resources, enough resources—to bolster Gippsland’s failing ambulance services.

This is a tale of three constituents all waiting in distress for an ambulance service that took far too long to occur: the Latrobe Valley, Bass Coast and Gippsland examples. The first one is a Churchill resident. Her husband collapsed on the kitchen floor in abject pain. She called 000 for assistance. She said she waited 5 minutes at least for the phone to ring and then another 5 minutes for it to be diverted to the correct ambulance hotline.

The resident was told that the ambulance would be at least 90 minutes wait for Churchill, coming out from the Latrobe Valley, Traralgon.

The second one: this gentleman was riddled with arthritis and had been waiting for 20 months to have his hip replacement. Visiting her father, Sheree noticed that he had collapsed in acute abdominal pain. She called 000. She waited for 2 hours for the ambulance, and indeed the ambulance service rang back saying ‘Can you please take your father into hospital?’ on two separate occasions.

The third one: a workplace accident. Now, with this, my constituent said that he assessed his colleague. He noticed that he had multiple fractures on the hip and potentially around the lower base of his body but no spinal fractures. He called 000 and they said, ‘We’ll be at least 90 minutes’—again. He then decided that he was in too much pain, so he and his colleagues took this person into the local hospital: triaged, waited; triaged, waited—another 12 hours before he was transferred to the Alfred hospital. They all said the paramedics were great. I hold with them, with the greatest respect for our paramedics, but this system is failing Gippsland residents. It is failing.

The Premier said in March 2015:

By working with paramedics to fix the ambulance crisis, we’re finding the minutes that save lives.

Jill Hennessy in 2018 said, indeed it was while opening a Traralgon ambulance station, that ‘patients get faster care when they need it’. Well, my constituents are not getting that faster care. The response times from Ambulance Victoria stats clearly show that people are waiting longer. The compliance is down and people are waiting longer, and I call on the minister to fix this system, provide those adequate resources into Gippsland and stop people waiting on the floor in abject pain.