Growing Victoria’s Paramedic Workforce To Ease Pressure

The Andrews Labor Government has recruited hundreds of new paramedics this year – delivering another boost to our health system and helping our ambulance services meet the record levels of demand being seen Australia-wide.

Premier Daniel Andrews and Minister for Health Mary-Anne Thomas today visited the latest intake of 64 recruits during their first week of training at Dandenong South to welcome them to Ambulance Victoria – as they begin work saving lives across the state.

These new recruits will hit the road on 22 August, heading off to stations across Melbourne and regional Victoria. It brings the total number of new paramedics recruited so far this year to 404 – with 157 joining crews in regional Victoria.

Beginning with a four-week induction program which gives them the vital skills they need before they hit the road, recruits learn how to safely move and load patients to prevent injuries, aggression and assault prevention training, and driving ambulance vehicles to ‘lights and sirens’ cases.

Graduate paramedics become fully credentialed after one year, after which they continue professional development and education for their entire careers to help them provide the best care and stay safe while they’re doing so.

The Labor Government’s $35 million boost earlier this year fast-tracked the recruitment of 120 paramedics, who started in May. As part of the Victorian Budget 2022/23, a further $124 million has been invested to put even more paramedics on the road and build on record recruitment levels.

Ambulance Victoria recruited 700 paramedics in 2021 – its single largest annual recruitment ever – and is on track to recruit the same number this year. This will be critical in responding to increasing demand, with the organisation recently experiencing its busiest two quarters on record.

The Labor Government has expanded the paramedic workforce by more than 66 per cent since 2014 – an increase of almost 2,200 paramedics.

On top of that, the Government recently announced a $162 million package to help paramedics and emergency departments work together, improve patient flow and get paramedics back on the road faster as they face increasing COVID and flu hospitalisations, more healthcare workers off sick and record demand for care.

Quotes attributable to Premier Daniel Andrews

“We recruited 700 new paramedics last year – and we’re on track to do the same this year.”

“Despite the challenges health systems across Australia are facing, we’ll keep delivering the resources and infrastructure our paramedics need, so they can keep delivering the best possible care to Victorians.”

Quotes attributable to Minister for Ambulance Services Mary-Anne Thomas

“We’re backing our healthcare workers as part of our Pandemic Repair Plan, recruiting more than 400 extra paramedics this year alone.”

“They’re out on our roads now, easing pressure on our healthcare system and putting patients first.”