From today, NSW paramedics will not sit and wait with a patient at a hospital if their issue is not critical and they are over 18 years of age.
Under the current rules, paramedics must wait with patients until they are transferred to hospital staff and this includes non-urgent situations like sunburns.
But why are they doing it now? Could any paramedics involved in the stand get into trouble for this? How will the health department respond to this stand?
In today’s episode of THIS ARVO IN SYDNEY, host Sacha Barbour Gatt chats with southwest Sydney paramedic and Health Services Union delegate, Tess Oxley, to find out why they have decided now is the time to start the revolution.
Oxley says paramedics are “the lowest” paid in the country, telling Barbour Gatt how she did not take any breaks during work hours, all the while dealing with tremendous stress when responding to patients.
“The patients are waiting for us longer and longer for us to respond to them, which makes our jobs harder once we get there,” she said.
“Even when we get to the hospital, we have to continue care of them within the hospital settings until we are able to offload, which is sometimes multiple hours,” she added.
Oxley and other paramedics created graffiti on the window on ambulance vehicles to advocate this stand.
“The public is usually shocked when we tell them what the situation is for us, and they are more than supportive all the time.”