Ryan seeks ambulance trial results under FoI
20 April 2016
Wednesday 20 April 2016
Member for Euroa and Deputy Leader of The Nationals Steph Ryan has lodged a freedom of information request to force the Andrews Labor Government’s to release the results of the Nagambie ambulance trial.
Ms Ryan said the pilot program concluded over a month ago but Labor had refused to release any information about its results.
“When the government announced the trial in October last year, it made a very clear commitment to evaluate the program in February 2016 and to consider its effectiveness as part of the development of its ambulance service review,” Ms Ryan said.
“When it released ‘Victoria’s Ambulance Action Plan’ in December 2015 it again indicated that the results of the pilot program would be evaluated ‘as part of a review of rural service operations’.
“It is now April and we are yet to hear anything about the results of the pilot, let alone how it fits into the government’s ‘action plan’ for regional communities like Nagambie.”
Ms Ryan said she had called for the release of the data back in February but Health Minister Jill Hennessy had refused to release it.
“I requested information from the Minister after the Christmas phase of the trial was completed, including how many call-outs were attended and what the local response times were during the period the ambulance was based in town,” Ms Ryan said.
Ms Ryan said Ambulance Victoria data showed that well under half code-one call outs between 1 October and 31 December 2015 in Strathbogie Shire saw an ambulance on the scene within 15 minutes.
“Only 30 to 40 per cent of code one call outs in Strathbogie made it under the 15 minute marker during this period,” Ms Ryan said.
“This is not a reflection of Victoria’s paramedics who do a commendable job with the resources they are given. This is an issue of resourcing which Labor is ignoring.
Before the 2014 election the Coalition committed to base two full time paramedics in Nagambie with the support of an ambulance community officer, as well as a new MICA unit in Seymour.
More than 500 people have signing a petition calling on the government to fund a permanent ambulance presence in Nagambie.