Ambulances are responding faster now

November 11, 2017

On the road: Paramedic Bec Hance and News journalist Sionnie Kelly head off.

Paramedics are responding faster to life-threatening medical emergencies despite massive demand from one of Victoria’s worst-ever flu seasons, with the best quarter one response times in eight years.

The latest performance data shows the Victorian Government’s ambulance reforms and funding boosts are delivering record results for residents.

Ambulances across the state were getting to life-threatening emergencies 35 seconds faster compared to last year, with 79.5 per cent of Code One call outs arriving within the target 15 minutes despite a horrific flu season.

This means Code One ambulances are now arriving one minute and 34 seconds faster compared to this quarter three years ago.

This year’s flu season put significant pressure on hospitals, with respiratory presentations to emergency departments almost 20 per cent higher than for the same time last year.

A record 454018 patients attended Victorian hospital emergency departments this quarter, putting unprecedented demand on emergency services with an increase of 32486 patients or 7.7 per cent compared to last year.

Despite this intense pressure, the data shows hospitals are working more efficiently, with the most urgent cases being treated sooner.

Last quarter, the highest percentage of patients across all categories received their surgeries within benchmarks for timeliness for a September quarter.

This meant median wait times for category three patients reduced by more than six weeks since the same time four years ago.

The government provided an additional $115million for hospitals to fight this year’s unprecedented flu season, to ensure more patients can receive the care they need when they need it, for the remainder of the year.

In Mitchell Shire, the response time of under 15 minutes stands at 62.6 per cent, with an average time of 14 minutes and 29 seconds.

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