Potential action: no more signing onto MDT until mandatory checks complete / medications signed out

  • Published May 10, 2024
  • Industries

Survey here

Over the past month, members have reported increasing demands from NSWA to ensure the MDT is built within 3 minutes of commencement of shift, with the threat of performance management if not adhered to.

Paramedics are professionals and have now have a duty to meet the standards expected of a professional. Aside from he physical impossibility of walking into station, verbally signing on, selecting a vehicle, accessing, and starting up the ambulance and having the MDT boot up in less than 3 minutes without the need to arrive early and work for free, this instruction can have serious consequences for registered paramedics by forcing them to be non-compliant with professional standards.

The MDT should only be built when paramedics are able to respond. Responding to a patient without the medications/equipment required, produces a high risk if the paramedic not being able to provide the standard of care expected of them – creating a clinical, safety and professional risk.

It is the responsibility of NSWA to ensure that they have the clinical resources available to respond to emergencies. It is not members’ responsibility to come in early and donate their time to create these resources. This is why the Service agreed the additional 15 minutes of rostered time to balance rosters would be used for commencement of shift checks. With the ever-increasing number of checks required as skills and scope increase, not to mention some stations having over 10 people attempting to sign restricted medications in and out at the same time, 15 minutes is no longer anywhere near enough time, let alone 3!

ADHSU activists met this week to discuss their concerns with the following recommendation made:

  1. Members to arrive at work at their rostered shift commencement time
  2. Verbal sign on
  3. Mandatory checks completed and medications signed out – Only at this point should members build their MDT and make themselves available to priority cases 2i and above
  4. Secondary checks completed – Members are now available for all cases / assignments.

NSWA will say the burden of responding without checks complete is on them, but when considering the responsibilities of a registered professional, this is doubtful. They certainly can’t take on the emotional burden that comes from arriving to a patient that paramedics know could have been helped better if they arrived prepared. The only burden they can absolutely ensure that they take on here is paying their professional staff and giving them the time to prepare for their shift.

Please vote on the above action via this survey. The voting will close at 1600 Tuesday 14 May.