Ambulance ramping concerns

ABOUT nine ambulances were parked outside Bendigo Hospital on Monday for up to an hour, according to Bendigo paramedic Brett Adie. 

Mr Adie said it was uncommon to see so many ambulances ramped at the hospital. He said it wasn’t a reflection of the hospital but a sign that the ambulance system wasn’t working. 

He said the reason why so many ambulances were ramped was because there were not enough hospital beds in emergency, with patients left waiting on stretchers in the ambulances. 

“There are five ambulances in Bendigo and they are all tied up at the hospital,” Mr Adie said. 

“It is not the hospital it’s the crews that are busy.”

Mr Adie said if ambulances were dispatched appropriately then ramping would not be an issue. 

“If someone calls for an ambulance, they will get one,” he said. “There is no difference between each job. It could have been a coincidence to have so many ambulances at the hospital but it just shows you the trouble we are having.”

Mr Adie said if the system was updated then it would allow ambulance crews to attend emergencies. 

“This is what we are arguing for, more crews,” he said. 

“If there are nine ambulances parked at the hospital that means there are no other ambulances in Bendigo. 

“The hospital is doing everything they can to work with us but there needs to be improvements.” 

Ambulance Employees Association state secretary Steve Mcghie said it was concerning to see ramping happening in Bendigo. 

“It means ambulances are not available to respond to an emergency,” he said. 

“This is happening more often.”