On behalf of our Ambos and support staff members, we thank all of those in the SA Community who supported the Ambulance Employees Association’s (AEA) Safe Staffing campaign which was necessary to ensure the state’s ambulance service is safely resourced across Adelaide and our regions.
Thank you to the 44,000 South Australians who supported our parliamentary petition calling for action on ambulance resourcing and ramping. Thank you to those who stood with us at rallies and marches, and to all who stood up and spoke in the media about the suffering they and their loved ones experienced as they waited far too long for an ambulance. Your stories and your support played an important role in making those in power listen and take action.
It has been 12 months since the change of State Government, and there is now a comprehensive 4-year rebuilding plan for the ambulance service. Implementation of this plan is well underway, with many commitments being brought forward to restore the SA Community’s safety as soon as possible.
Eight additional 24/7 Ambulance crews have already been deployed across South Australia – in Norwood, Edwardstown, Marion, Golden Grove, Gawler and Mount Barker. Over the next 3 years, an additional 14 ambulance crews will be deployed throughout regional SA, and an additional 6 ambulance crews will be deployed across metropolitan Adelaide. To accommodate these new resources, we will see the building and upgrade of ambulance stations and a new Emergency Operations Centre for 000 call answering, coordination of ambulance deployment and referrals to appropriate alternative care pathways. You can see the full plan below.
There is no doubt that these additional crews and other commitments will make our community safer, so that when you or your family call for an ambulance in your time of need, there is one available. Recent reporting is showing that with these new crews, emergency ambulance response times are beginning to improve.
There is still much more to be done to address ramping and it will take time for the new State Government’s commitments to take full effect. The AEA continues to hold productive discussions with the Government to identify more immediate solutions to ramping, while over 550 additional hospital beds are built to improve capacity in our health system. We will continue to alert the community to significantly delayed ambulance responses and ramping incidents, and the Government has committed to providing greater transparency through the regular public release of data on ramping and ambulance response times.
While rebuilding is underway, there may still be times when ambulance responses are delayed because of ramping at hospitals and/or inadequate resourcing. This should not deter anyone from calling 000 if they believe they have an emergency – the ambulance service will still prioritise your emergency and attempt to respond as soon as it can.
You can be assured that your Ambos, through the AEA, will continue to advocate on your behalf and to hold the Government accountable and responsible for their safety and the safety of the community they serve, no matter which political party holds office. We have a long and proud reputation of doing just this. We have played a significant role in advocating for, and achieving, increases in ambulance staffing and the professionalisation and clinical advancement of SA Ambos, and we will continue to do so. Our long-standing campaign mantra is just as valid today as it was before; Safe Staffing = Safe Community.
Ambulance Employees Association of SA
Click on the below image to see the full roll out plan for SA Ambulance Service.