Ambulance Victoria Performance statistics for 2015/16 Q4 reveal that Code 1 incident response rates have failed to improve in the Baw Baw Shire, despite growing demand for Emergency Services.
Ambulance Victoria’s 2015/16 report reveals that the percentage of Ambulance Response Times under 15 mins to Code 1 incidents (patients who require urgent paramedic care) in Baw Baw Shire is only 49%
Over the fourth quarter of 2014/15, the response rate was at 51% with the average response to a call taking approximately 18 minutes.
“Ambulance Victoria Performance report proves that Daniel Andrews is not serious about his commitments with regional communities”, Member of Narracan Gary Blackwood said.
“After more than 18 months in Government, residents across Baw Baw Shire who need urgent care as Code 1 response now wait longer for an ambulance than they did before.”
Growing demand and population growth in Baw Baw have been blamed for the poor response times.
Baw Baw Shire is one of the fastest growing municipalities with recent exponential growth in Drouin, Warragul, Trafalgar and Yarragon.
“The Baw Baw Shire is one of the fastest growing municipalities and with towns such as Drouin, Warragul, Trafalgar and Yarragon growing exponentially the Premier needs to reverse these trends now before they balloon further potentially costing lives”, Mr Blackwood said.
Earlier this year, Ambulance Victoria provided Drouin with a 24/7 publicly accessible defibrillator outside the Rotary Club with the aim of helping those suffering from cardiac arrest.
There has also been an increase in the number of responders working in the Baw Baw Shire from 673 to 727.
However, Mr Blackwood believes there needs to be a greater effort made from the Premier to improve the problematic response time rate and suggests the construction of an Ambulance Station in Drouin as a possible solution.
“It is now evident that more needs to be done and I am calling on Daniel Andrews to fast track the planning and construction of a Drouin Ambulance station to support that community which has seen a drastic fall in response rate for Code 1 calls”, Mr Blackwood said.
‘It is time Daniel Andrews stopped talking and making promises and started delivering for regional communities who need it most,’ said Mr Blackwood.
In a statement, Premier Daniel Andrews said ambulance response times in regional communities were unacceptable and that he would work to improve local services to ensure critical support reached Code 1 patients as a priority.
Poor ambulance times were a major talking point of the 2014 state election with Labor emphasising a ‘crisis in the service.’