Extra paramedics promised

HEALTH and Human Services minister Lara Giddings has announced her plan to deliver on last year’s promise to double the number of paramedics in the Derwent Valley. Ms Giddings last week said funding had been provided in the 2008-09 State Budget to recruit additional paramedics to New Norfolk.

The commitment to provide two additional paramedics at the New Norfolk Ambulance Station was made in 2007 as a trade-off following the decision to close the Ouse District Hospital. While the future of the hospital remains in the balance, the doubling of the staff at the ambulance station will mean there is a paramedic on duty 24-hours a day without the need for on-call arrangements. Recruiting will take place over the next year, either via a student intake in February 2009 or the hiring of already qualified staff.

Tasmanian Ambulance Service branch stations such as New Norfolk are staffed by paramedics supported by Volunteer Ambulance Officers. For information about becoming a volunteer, call at the New Norfolk Ambulance Station, Circle St, or phone 6230 8570.

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